Amazon's Echo can now bypass its internal speaker and stream to higher quality playback hardware.
(CCM) — Amazon has addressed on of the biggest weaknesses in its Echo smart speaker following an update to its software: the device can now stream audio to external speakers using Bluetooth. Before the update, which was made with no formal announcement, the Echo could only play sound through its own built-in speaker. Although the sound from this speaker is adequate, the ability to stream music to more powerful high quality speakers makes the Echo a much more attractive proposition for audiophiles. Using an external speaker may also make it easier for the Echo to hear voice commands while music is being streamed. Amazon has now published instructions on how to use the new streaming functionality.
Amazon already offers the Echo Dot, a device which is similar to the Echo but which has no internal speakers. This also offers the ability to stream music over Bluetooth, and in addition it is also equipped with a 3.5mm line-out jack to connect the device to an amplifier or powered speakers using a cable. The Echo Dot has proved popular because of its ability to connect to external speakers while costing around one third of the price of an Echo, and this may be why Amazon has decided to add the streaming capability to its premium Echo device.
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