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Review: Amazon Echo Pop Compact Bluetooth Speaker with Alexa

Amazon recently expanded its Alexa-powered Echo series smart speaker line-up with the new and affordable Bluetooth Echo Pop with support for Khaleej Arabic. We got a chance to try the new speaker, and here are our thoughts about the device.

The new Echo Pop is designed to be a compact speaker that can be easily placed in living rooms, bedrooms, and small tight spaces or corners. The actual dimensions of the device are 99 x 83 x 91 mm, and the speaker weighs only 196, allowing users to carry the speaker to other places easily. To match and blend with the surrounding, the Echo Pop is available in four colors: Lavender Bloom, Glacier White, Charcoal, and lastly, Midnight Teal, which we have here for review.

The new speaker features a 49.9mm front-firing speaker with support for Lossless High Definition sound. The front-facing fabric surface of the speaker has a lighter tone of the Midnight Teal color to match the chassis color. There is a curved lightbar on the top portion which is used for letting the user know that there are pending notifications to attend. When the lightbar is not turned on, it simply means that the device is not listening to commands. This is good for those who are concerned about privacy. And by simply calling out “Alexa”, the lightbar turns blue and is ready to listen to your query.

Speaking of privacy, there is a dedicated Microphone Off button that is located on the top side. Amazon mentions that the mute button is designed to electronically disconnect the microphones, ensuring that your conversations at home remain private. The lightbar also turns red when the mic is muted. The mic mute button sits in between the volume + and – buttons, and the buttons are rounded in design. When it comes to wireless capabilities, the speaker features support for 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Dual-band WiFi, and Bluetooth connectivity. With Bluetooth, the speaker offers Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP) for streaming audio from your smartphone to the Echo Pop, or from the Echo Pop to your personal Bluetooth speaker.

The power connector port is located on the rear side. While most manufacturers are now switching to USB-C for power delivery on smartphones and even laptops, Amazon decided to use the old and traditional power connectors, which is a bit of a disappointment, considering the fact that 15W USB-C-based power adapters are now plenty available in the market. This was the same case with the Amazon Echo Dot 2022 speaker that I reviewed last year.

I hope that Amazon starts using USB-C power adapters for their next iteration of Alexa Echo smart speakers. That said, as a part of sustainability, the front-facing speaker fabric of the Echo Pop is made of 100% post-consumer recycled yarn and the main chassis of the speaker is made from 80% recycled aluminum.

Amazon also mentions that 99% of the speaker packaging is made of wood fibre-based materials, from responsibly managed forests or recycled sources. The contents include the speaker, a 15W white-colored power charger with cable, and a quick start guide. Setting up the Echo Pop is easy with the Amazon Alexa smartphone application.

With Alexa, you will be able to enhance your smart home living experience with commands such as “Alexa, turn on my light”, “Turn on the TV”, “Set the thermostat to 65 degrees” and more. And this applies to Alexa-supporting smart devices such as light bulbs, smart plugs, locks, thermostats, fans, and WiFi connections. Amazon also mentions that they have been updating the skill sets of Alexa with over a hundred commands and more. You can ask Alexa to play relaxing sounds for a peaceful time or ask to provide the latest news updates or sharpen your skills by asking Alexa to test your knowledge.

The Alexa app also allows users to personalize their privacy settings and review their voice search history, along with deleted sounds, connected smart home devices, and more. Specially tailored for Muslim customers, the user will be able to ask Alexa to play different verses of the Qur’an recited by their preferred Qari’, and also set reminders for prayer timings and listen to various types of Dua’a. Some of the commands include “Alexa, what time is Asr prayers”, “Alexa, read Sourat Al Baqara”, “Alexa, tell me the story of Prophet Mohammad”, and more. Additionally, the speaker also has the option for Khaleeji Arabic language.

For those looking for an affordable and compact Alexa-powered speaker, the new Amazon Echo Pop is a good choice to add to your shopping list. The compact design allows users to place the speaker anywhere in their home and in tight spaces and comes in four different colors. The chassis and the fabric are made of 100% post-consumer recycled and 80% recycled aluminum, respectively. The 49.9mm front-firing speaker is loud with good sound quality and Alexa has support for over a hundred skills, including spiritual ones for Qur’an and support for Khaleeji Arabic language. There is also a dedicated mute button to disconnect the mic for those concerned about privacy. The Amazon Echo Pop is currently priced at 189 AED.

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