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  Reply # 1715141 3-Feb-2017 20:28
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Can anybody give me a brief summary of what does and doesn't work with one of these in NZ and what steps are required to configure it now?

 

I'm off to the US next week and was tempted to get a Dot, but now thinking I should get an Echo. What are everybody's views of the two?

 

 


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  Reply # 1715144 3-Feb-2017 21:01
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plas:

So instead of watching TV I've now got Alexa controlling my garden sprinklers.



That's on my todo list. What sprinkler controller / system are you using?

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  Reply # 1715177 3-Feb-2017 21:54
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sbiddle:

 

Can anybody give me a brief summary of what does and doesn't work with one of these in NZ and what steps are required to configure it now?

 

I'm off to the US next week and was tempted to get a Dot, but now thinking I should get an Echo. What are everybody's views of the two?

 

 

About the only things that don't work is local weather. I.e. you can say "Alexa, what is the weather in Christchurch, New Zealand" no problem, but if you say "Alexa, what is the weather" it will give you the forecast for Seattle or something. In the US you can set you local post code and then a weather request will be tailored to that location. 

 

Obviously none of the other location based requests work either, i.e. "Alexa, where is the nearest coffee shop" but I have never thought that would be useful - I know where the closest things are to my house!

 

Date/time requests work fine. Alarms and timers are very handy. The shopping and TODO lists are awesome, and even better if you integrate with TODOist. 

 

Spotify integration works very well. Some artists and album names she might struggle with, but if you say it with a 'Merican accent it is amazing what she will pick up.

 

And finally, home automation integration is really quite wonderful! By using a Hue Emulation (such as ha-bridge) you can integrate with just about anything. You are limited to "turn on/off" commands (and dimming but I have found that a little hit and miss) but there is plenty you can do if you already have something like openHAB running. 

 

I have both the Echo and 2xDots. The Echo is worth the extra money, the speaker is really quite good and makes playing music so easy, "Alexa, play some Foo Fighters" and away she goes. But the Dots are nice and discrete, and if you don't care too much about the sound will do everything the Echo does.

 

Really impressive kit and I can honestly say we (the wife and I) use ours well over 15-20 times a day.

 

 


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  Reply # 1715199 3-Feb-2017 22:51
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MickeyD:
plas:

 

So instead of watching TV I've now got Alexa controlling my garden sprinklers.

 



That's on my todo list. What sprinkler controller / system are you using?

 

 

 

Using openhab2 to control a opensprinkler bee 2

 

http://rayshobby.net/opensprinkler-bee/

 

and I'm just using the Orbit valves in the link below. You can buy them at Mitre10 for $44 each, for some reason they don't show up on their website.

 

https://www.orbitonline.com/products/hose-watering/timers/automatic-yard-watering/kits/yard-watering-kit-with-2-valves-and-limited-hardware-1984

 

 


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  Reply # 1715256 4-Feb-2017 08:52
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I use the big sky skill for local weather which works really well.




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  Reply # 1715260 4-Feb-2017 09:10
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sbiddle:

 

Can anybody give me a brief summary of what does and doesn't work with one of these in NZ and what steps are required to configure it now?

 

I'm off to the US next week and was tempted to get a Dot, but now thinking I should get an Echo. What are everybody's views of the two?

 

 

 

 

I'm off to the USA very soon and am torn between an Echo and a Google Home.

 

 

 

Any thoughts on how to make that decision?


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  Reply # 1715273 4-Feb-2017 09:49
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I would get the home if only getting one and you want to use it for talking to about calandar, weather, traffic, nearest bakery, when bunnings is open till etc.

 

Get the echo dot if you want to play music. The home needs a chromecast to get an output and it doesnt have anywhere near the noise rejection of the echo when playing music. The dot will her you say alexa and turn the music down, the home and a chromecast will just keep playing at normal levels so it has a hard time hearing you.

 

All of them sound crap on the internal speaker. The full size echo is the loudest so that has found its home in the kitchen where I dont really care about sound quality and need to be able to hear it over normal kitchen noises like the suckky fan.





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  Reply # 1715452 4-Feb-2017 17:17
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shk292:

 

sbiddle:

 

Can anybody give me a brief summary of what does and doesn't work with one of these in NZ and what steps are required to configure it now?

 

I'm off to the US next week and was tempted to get a Dot, but now thinking I should get an Echo. What are everybody's views of the two?

 

 

 

 

I'm off to the USA very soon and am torn between an Echo and a Google Home.

 

 

 

Any thoughts on how to make that decision?

 

 

 

 

Get one of each and sell the one you don't like :-)

 

 

 

I have both and while they do similar things I am slowly preferring the GH because I can access my Play Music library and cast to a Chromecast and it recognises where I am without having to hack it like the Dot just to get NZ time.

 

 

 

The GH has a better speaker than the Dot but probably not as good as the Echo.

 

Obviously can't buy stuff on the GH but that's hardly a deal breaker for me.





System One: Popcorn Hour A200,  PS3 SuperSlim, NPVR and Plex Server running on Gigabyte Brix (Windows 10 Pro), Sony BDP-S390 BD player, Pioneer AVR, Raspberry Pi running Kodi and Plex, Panasonic 60" 3D plasma, Google Chromecast

System Two: Popcorn Hour A200 ,  Oppo BDP-80 BluRay Player with hardware mode to be region free, Vivitek HD1080P 1080P DLP projector with 100" screen. Harman Kardon HK AVR 254 7.1 receiver, Samsung 4K player, Google Chromecast

 


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https://plus.google.com/+laurencechiu

 

 


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  Reply # 1733837 9-Mar-2017 16:52
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plas:

 

MickeyD:
plas:

 

So instead of watching TV I've now got Alexa controlling my garden sprinklers.

 



That's on my todo list. What sprinkler controller / system are you using?

 

Using openhab2 to control a opensprinkler bee 2

 

http://rayshobby.net/opensprinkler-bee/

 

and I'm just using the Orbit valves in the link below. You can buy them at Mitre10 for $44 each, for some reason they don't show up on their website.

 

https://www.orbitonline.com/products/hose-watering/timers/automatic-yard-watering/kits/yard-watering-kit-with-2-valves-and-limited-hardware-1984

 

 

Thanks for the advice @plas. Finally had everything arrive and found some time to get it set up. I was unable to find the orbit valves at any garden centre in Hamilton and ended up ordering them off eBay. Works great now to show off with "Alexa, turn on the garden sprinkler"

 

I just wish that I'd had the foresight to get external power close enough to the tap - instead I'm using a spare powerbank. I figure that if I get a 20000 mAh version it should keep it running for about a month.

 

 


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