Amazon is making a new version of the Echo Dot, its Alexa-enabled mini-speaker. The biggest news isn’t the upgrades—it’s that anyone can buy it.
First released earlier this year, the Echo Dot is a miniature Amazon Echo that can plug into an external speaker or connect to your sound system over Bluetooth. It’s a neat little device that was our favorite of the new Alexa-powered products.
But the original Echo Dot was only available to existing Amazon Echo owners. And then, Amazon pulled the product completely (you can find originals for a few hundred dollars on eBay). That made us sad. But now a new version is available for pre-order. It now sells for just $50 (the original Dot was $90) and will start shipping on October 20th. If you want to outfit your whole home with Echo Dot devices (to go along with that sweet Sonos integration), Amazon is selling them in a six-pack (buy 5 get 1 free) and a 12-pack (buy 10 get 2 free).
The new Echo Dot has a slightly different hardware design, featuring volume buttons on the top. Under the hood, it has the same array of seven microphones as the original Amazon Echo, which means you can use it to call for stuff from across the room. And it’s even available white now. White, wow.
The new Echo Dot features a more powerful speech processor, which Amazon says will allow for “improved far-field speech recognition accuracy.” And it works with all the other Alexa stuff already in the wild.