One of the primary distinctions, if not THE primary distinction, between Echo and Dot has always been Dot’s ability to connect to external speakers via Bluetooth—and the Echo’s inability to do it. “Been” turns out to be the operative word there, because you can now pair your Echo with Bluetooth speakers.
I’ve tested the feature and it most definitely works. To pair your Echo with a Bluetooth speaker:
1. Turn on the Bluetooth speaker and make it discoverable.
2. Open the Alexa app and tap or click the Settings link in the menu bar.
3. Tap or click to select the Echo you want to pair.
4. In the Echo’s settings page, tap or click on Bluetooth. The Alexa service will automatically start searching for any Bluetooth devices within range of the selected Echo. Discovered devices will show up in the results box, as shown below:
5. Tap or click on the Bluetooth speaker you want to pair to complete the process.
6. Test it out by asking Alexa to play some music. It should now come out of the Bluetooth speaker.
Okay, Now What?
Being able to pipe your Echo’s audio to a wireless Bluetooth speaker offers some benefits you may not have thought of.
Is your bathroom within Bluetooth range of your Echo? Get a water-resistant Bluetooth speaker (like the one featured at the bottom of this post) and keep the music, podcasts or audiobooks going while you soak or soap up.
Do you like listening to some music or white noise at bedtime, but don’t want to disturb a partner or roommate? Get a mini Bluetooth speaker (Amazon UK customers click here) and put it under your pillow.
Caveat: If you’ve set a wake-up alarm on the Echo for the following morning, you will need to either turn off the Bluetooth speaker before you fall asleep (so it will un-pair), or keep the Bluetooth speaker plugged in to a power source all night so the alarm will sound right in your ear via the still-paired speaker.
Puttering around the house, moving from room to room while doing chores? Clip a mini Bluetooth speaker to a belt loop and take your Alexa audio with you. So long as you’re within Bluetooth range of the Echo, you’re golden!
Want to enjoy a morning or evening beverage on the balcony or patio along with your streaming audio? Bluetooth range is your only limitation now!
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Got a Dot? With the iFox iF012 Bluetooth Shower Speaker (UK visitors click here), you can bring Alexa’s voice-controlled music, audiobook and Kindle book (books with Text To Speech enabled) playback into the shower or bath with you! Just pair it to your Dot via Bluetooth. Currently (as of 3/7/16) rated 4.5/5 stars across over 1,400 reviews and priced at $29.99.
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