Published: Sat, October 07, 2017
Sci-tech | By Carrie Guzman

Google building tabletop 'Manhattan' to challenge Amazon's 'Echo Show'

Google building tabletop 'Manhattan' to challenge Amazon's 'Echo Show'

The new Echo uses Amazon's second generation far-field technology, which features better wake word processing, improved beam-forming technology, and enhanced noise cancellation.

Whoever you call will see your mobile phone number as the caller ID.

It is the least expensive Echo product and is priced at $34.99. Just say "Alexa, discover my devices" and the Echo Plus will automatically set up any smart devices it detects, such as lights, lock, and outlets. The video streaming service is an essential feature on the Echo Show, which is often useful for viewing video recipes while in the kitchen.

The little black box measures 130 mm by 90 mm by 29.5 mm (that's 5.1 inches by 3.5 inches by 1.2 inches), weighing in at 126.9 grams (4.5 ounces).

Before you could make any calls to landlines, you first have to do the whole calling setup on the Alexa app. Specifically, that you can now view live video feeds from Alexa-enabled cameras. If you have more than one Echo Show, Echo, Echo Plus or Echo Dot, Alexa uses ESP (Echo Spatial Perception) to respond from the Echo you're closest to. The buzz around the water cooler is that Google will be producing a new smart speaker code named "Manhattan".

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It's reported that, despite having worked on the device for a while now, the release of the Echo Show, along with the slew of new Echo devices, Google wants "Manhattan" out of the door in 2017. You simply connect a landline phone jack into the Echo Connect and then wirelessly pair it with an existing Echo device in your home. That's the number for the American Red Cross, just in case you felt like making a donation today, but Amazon allows for calls to "most" numbers in the US, Canada and Mexico. It will be available on December 13.

At the heart of them all is Alexa, the voice-activated software used to control the devices, which have few, if any buttons.

Live video from your connected cameras works on the Fire TV, but the experience still needs a lot of work. It comes with a remote with a built-in microphone for using Alexa to look up your favorite shows and movies, as well as all the other Alexa features you'd come to expect.

As opposed to the Fire TV Stick, the new Fire TV is a dongle that hangs off your TV's HDMI port, much like the Chromecast Ultra.

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