Have you always dreamed of having a personal assistant, whether his name is Alexa, Google Assistant or Siri? With connected speakers like Amazon Echo or Google Home. Make your choice that best fits your needs with our selection of the best speakers connected.
Since 2017, personal assistants have the coast and not only for fans of new technologies. Who to choose between Google Assistant, Alexa of Amazon, Apple’s Siri or Cortana of Microsoft and Bixby of Samsung? Find our selection of the best smart speakers currently available.
Google Home: the most versatile
Google Home is Google’s flagship connected speaker. It embeds Google Assistant that can be activated by pronouncing the magic words “Ok Google” or “Google Dis”.
Today it is the most versatile enclosure on the market and the best quality / price ratio. This is a perfect entry point to embark on the adventure of connected speakers. You’ll enjoy a very honorable sound, a discreet design that fits in most interiors and you get all the power of the assistant from the Mountain View Company. Google bonus point: The speaker can also interact with your Chromecast equipped TVs.
Why go for Google Home?
- For its versatility
- For its design
- For the Google ecosystem
Amazon Echo (2nd generation): Online Shopping Management
Of the 4 models in the Amazon Echo range available in France, the Amazon Echo (2nd generation) is one of the largest. It measures 148 x 88 x 88 mm for 821 grams.
This connected speaker works of course with Amazon Alexa, we use thanks to its 7 microphones that manage to hear the voice of the user even if there is music in the background. To use it, just start your query by “Alexa” (or “Amazon” or “Echo”, at the user’s choice). On the top of the device are 4 buttons and a light circle to indicate if the microphone is active or not. If the first Echo fishing on the audio quality, this second iteration significantly improves the rendering.
More than the technical characteristics, we must remember the presence of the many skills available on the Alexa application to vary the experience. These are created by third-party services that wish to invite themselves on the platform: games, quizzes, exercise programs or cooking recipes, the possibilities are very numerous as shown in the Skills library. What is also Alexa’s salt is the ability to make purchases on Amazon directly to the voice. Two conditions all the same: to be member Amazon Prime and to have registered its banking information. It can be quite practical every day.
Why is Amazon Echo recommended?
- For its competitive price
- For its many skills
- For its improved audio quality
It is currently available for $99.99
Apple HomePod: the king of sound
Cannot miss the HomePod. It must be recognized that this speaker has everything you need to appeal to iOS users … and only them. Because the HomePod only works with the services of Apple: Apple Music, HomeKit and Siri. As often Apple plays the map of the closed ecosystem.
And that’s a shame because the HomePod is to this day the speaker that offers the best audio quality, but since it does not work with Spotify or with Deezer, only subscribers to Apple Music will enjoy and it will take plus an iOS device. There is no way (simple) to use it with an Android terminal. Still, if you tick all the boxes and you have the means (the HomePod is expensive compared to its competitors), this is probably the best solution for you. We find the speaker in two colors: Sidereal Gray and White.
Why buy the HomePod
- The speaker connected with the best audio quality
- Very convenient for users of Apple services/products
- It is pretty
Amazon Echo Dot and Google Home Mini
Amazon and Google offer much more compact versions of their speakers: The Echo Dot and the Google Home Mini. Because of their size and therefore their limited volume, they are not ideal for your living room but adequate for smaller rooms like your bathroom. Perfect for replacing the radio you listen to in the shower. They offer all the features of their big sisters.
Why choose a mini speaker?
- To equip a small room; as secondary enclosure
- They are not expensive
- All the features of the assistants in a small format
The Echo Dot is available on Amazon for $49.99
Amazon Echo Plus: the same but bigger
The Amazon Echo Plus is a little more massive than the model presented just above its diameter of 99 mm against 88 mm for the basic Echo. It is equipped with a tweeter of 20 mm and a big woofer of 76 mm. What to broadcast Dolby sound 360 °!
It is naturally connected the speaker that offers the best sound experience at Amazon. Without being able to compete with HiFi hardware, it will be more than enough to brighten your evenings with Amazon Music. Note that it is possible to use both jack and audio output, as well as Echo.
Why is Amazon Echo Plus recommended?
- Because it delivers loud and 360 ° sound
- It has a sober design
- Its jack makes audio input and output
Google Home Max: king size
With this model, Google has seen things big. The Google Home Max is an imposing enclosure of 5.3 kg that can be placed vertically as well as horizontally. It is for people who absolutely want a HiFi speaker signed by Google. Moreover, it is also the most expensive of the three Google Home: $399.99.
It stands out from other Google Home by its audio qualities. The device has no less than four powerful speakers, has a jack and works Bluetooth. We appreciate its Smart Sound system that allows the device to broadcast music according to its placement in space.
Why take the Google Home Max rather than another speaker?
- It is easily understood by Google Assistant
- Good sound quality and volume that can go up very high
- Jack and Bluetooth jack
Amazon Echo Spot: the circular screen
The Amazon Echo Spot stands out with its 2.5-inch circular screen that adds a visual aspect to its operation with Amazon Alexa.
It allows to view requests made to Alexa, but also to make video calls with its integrated camera.
Why take the Amazon Echo Spot?
- For its 2.5 inch screen
- For his camera
- For its elegant design
Sonos One: the alternative hi-fi for Alexa
Alexa is not restricted to Amazon products. For example, Sonos has implemented the voice assistant in his Sonos One via an update. A connected Hi-Fi speaker that reveals its full potential in multi-room configurations. That is when several audio devices are connected to each other.
More than forty music streaming services like Deezer, Tidal or Soundcloud can be used with the Sono One. You can switch from one music to another by pressing the touch buttons, using the voice command or through the mobile application.
Design side, we are left with a plastic case accompanied by a metal grid that inspires the solidity. We find the Sonos One in two colors: black and white.
Why take the Sonos One?
- For his best sound reconstruction
- No need to install
- A scalable multi-room audio system
The speaker Sonos One is $199 on Amazon
JBL Link 20: the laptop
If you’re looking for a nomadic speaker, you have to turn to the JBL Link 20. The device is doing just fine for ambiancers indoors and outdoors. It also benefits from the IPX7 certification that allows it to withstand immersion in water up to 1 meter for 30 minutes and its autonomy of 10 hours.
The JBL Link 20 also works with Google Assistant and delivers a sound of the most acceptable sound quality with good speech recognition.
Why buy the JBL Link 20?
- For its IPX7 certification
- For its built-in battery
- For the sound quality
What is a personal assistant for?
Google Assistant, Alexa, Cortana or Siri, they are simply artificial intelligences that can answer your oral and written requests. And as their names suggest, they aim to make your life easier by becoming an intermediary between all your connected objects. Asking for the weather, various information, listening to the radio or music and of course driving the connected objects of the house are among the most common uses.
For example, if you-have a Chromecast at home, you can-have Google Even Wizard launch Netflix is your TV in person. At present, it is this last personal assistant who leads the dance, his version is less perfected than the English one.
Google Assistant, Alexa or Siri, how to choose?
There are many voice assistants on the market. Many people have tried their own solution like Samsung or Bixby or Microsoft with Cortana not to mention the multiple assistants available only in certain regions, in China in particular. In practice, three of them stand out in France: Google Assistant of … Google, Alexa of Amazon and Siri Apple.
They outline the same features just above, but not all are equal. To put it simply, here are their respective strengths:
- Google Assistant is now the most effective voice assistant. He understands better and more successful returns. Of course, there is Google behind.
- Alexa is quite powerful, but has the advantage of being very related to Amazon, which allows him to buy directly on the platform. Alexa, thanks to her “skills”, can also access a whole series of services that are not found elsewhere.
- Finally Siri remains that the Apple User know well. The assistant is here below the benefits of an interesting integration with the Apple ecosystem.