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Amazon Echo Dot (3rd Gen) with Clock review: The time is now

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The Amazon Echo Dot (3rd Gen) with Clock shares many outstanding features with past iterations, but now it gains the convenience of displaying the actual time.
This review was last updated by Digital Trends’ Smart Home editor John Velasco on 7/17/2020. While I’m frequently surrounded by cool tech, I confess I’ve never used an Amazon Alexa powered speaker on a full-time basis in my home – until now. That’s partly because I bought a Google Home first and have been on the Google Assistant train since then. Plus, when you’ve invested in the ecosystem, it’s tough to make the switch. But here I am, making the switch to Amazon’s Alexa with the company’s latest affordable smart speaker in the Amazon Echo Dot with Clock. I know what you’re thinking. It’s just the Amazon Echo Dot slapped with an LED clock, right? But don’t dismiss it just because that’s a subtle change. Even now, months after its initial release, it’s still a wonderful option to consider if you’re just now diving into the smart home. If you’re looking for something more comprehensive than just a voice assistant, then consider the Amazon Echo Show 8 for video chat, or perhaps another ideal bedside companion with the Echo Spot. With the advent of smartphones, the bedroom alarm clock has nearly gone extinct. So, why in the world would we need another stationary thing to tell us the time? Well, since even the Xfinity cable box in my bedroom eliminated the clock from its design, there’s actually no other way to tell time unless I glance at my phone. And that’s why I can appreciate the Amazon Echo Dot with Clock, because when you’re half asleep, you don’t want to be fumbling around to tell the time. Instead, I can quickly glance at the puck-sized speaker on my nightstand. Since the LED clock’s brightness adapts to ambient lighting conditions, it’s never too bright or too dim. It would’ve been great to see different color options for the LED clock, but the design of this Echo Dot is refreshingly simple and intuitive. There’s no fuss about it. You don’t even have to touch your phone. Current owners of the 3rd-generation Amazon Echo Dot won’t find anything drastically different with the design of this latest model. Besides the addition of that LED clock, the rest of the speaker is the same. It has a fabric exterior finish, physical buttons on top, and the signature light ring. Available in just sandstone at the moment, it complements any decor style without completely overpowering whatever else you might have lying around.

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