Google to launch Echo Show competitors in partnership with JBL, Lenovo, Sony, LG, and other major companies

Facing incredibly tough competition from Amazon, and with Apple’s HomePod on the horizon, Google announced that Google Assistant will be making its way to a wide range of smart home speakers made by different manufacturers in 2018. Major tech companies, including Bang & Olufsen, Altec Lansing, Anker Innovations, Braven, iHome, JBL, Jensen, LG, Lenovo, Klipsch, Knit Audio, Memorex, RIVA Audio, SōLIS, and Sony are reportedly on board and will be producing their own smart speakers powered by Google’s AI Assistant.

What’s more interesting is that JBL, …


Alexa tops App Store charts for the first time, revealing strength of Echo sales during the holidays


Loyal PhoneArena readers know that all throughout 2017, we told you to expect smart speakers to enjoy very strong sales during the holiday shopping season. And this seems to be the case as the iOS version of Amazon’s Alexa app is topping the U.S. App Store charts for the first time. Before the Christmas holidays, the Alexa app ranked in a range between number 60 and number 90. The sudden surge to the top surely indicates that quite a few people found an Echo smart speaker under the tree or in a Chanukah themed box toward the tail end of this month. Just yesterday, Amazon said that the Echo …

Deal: Second-Gen Amazon Echo on sale for just $80 ($20 off) plus a $10 gift card

Smart speakers will probably turn out to be one of the most popular gifts this holiday season. And why not? Considering all of the things that they can do, such as turn on/off smart appliances, order a Lyft or Uber, update you on the latest sports, stock prices, news and weather, send texts, make calls, tell jokes and much more, this is quite a device for the connected household to own.

And pricing has never been lower. Consider that both the Amazon Echo Dot (the Echo model that looks like a hockey puck) and the Google Home Mini can both be had for $29.99. And now Newegg is offering the …

Amazon working on YouTube clone for Echo Show and Echo Spot to be called AmazonTube?

You might remember that back in late September, Google pulled YouTube from the Amazon Echo Show and its 7-inch display. Google was upset that Amazon had removed certain features from the version of YouTube that was being used with the smart speaker. Amazon took away the autoplay capability, which allows a viewer to sit and watch video after video after video without having to lift a finger. Amazon also disabled the ability of  Echo Show users to subscribe to a YouTube Channel. These channels are where you will find videos posted by a particular company, or individual.

Amazon apparently …

Amazon Echo Spot, already sold out, officially launched today priced at $129

The smart speaker revolution continues and it is as strong as ever. Today, for example, Amazon officially launched the Echo Sport. This is a smart speaker that looks like a small alarm clock. It features the tools of the trade which means it is equipped with a speaker and virtual personal assistant Alexa. It also is the second Echo product to feature a screen. The Echo Spot comes with a 2.5-inch display.

Sure, the Echo Spot will actually wake you with an alarm, just like the alarm clock it looks like. But it will also control your smart appliances, stream music, make a phone call, set a …

Amazon Echo speakers and Music Unlimited are coming to 28 new countries, see the entire list here

Amazon is doing a big expansion of its media services. Today, the company announced that it has introduced Music Unlimited, its paid music streaming service, and the Echo smart speakers to 28 new markets in Europe and South America. 

Here’s the complete list of newly-added countries: 
Belgium, Bolivia, Bulgaria, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Panama, Peru, Poland, …

Google once again blocks YouTube from the Amazon Echo Show

Back in late September, Google pulled YouTube from the Amazon Echo Show. The latter is the smart speaker that features a 7-inch screen, and Google’s streaming video site had proven to be quite popular on the Echo Show. At the time, Google stated that the use of YouTube on the Amazon Echo Show “violates our terms of service, creating a broken user experience. We hope to be able to reach an agreement and resolve these issues soon.”

What Google was referring to was Amazon’s decision not to offer two features on the Echo Show’s version of YouTube that are available everywhere else. Those two …

Second generation Amazon Echo and Echo Dot on sale again in time for holiday shopping

Miss Amazon’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals on the second generation Amazon Echo and Amazon Echo Dot smart speakers? We have some great news. Amazon will once again have both units on sale for the exact same pricing it offered the two smart speakers for during the recent shopping holidays. We’ve pointed out often that smart speakers will be found under many trees and inside many wrapped boxes for Christmas and Chanukah this year. With a dedicated speaker and a virtual assistant, smart speakers can come in handy, and they make a great gift.

For example, Alexa can help Amazon …

Staples Black Friday deals: Amazon Echo, Google Home and tablets on sale

We now have Staples Black Friday deals go official so shoppers can prepare in advance for the biggest shopping day of the year.
Staples’ Black Friday deals come after we have already seen Best Buy, Wal-Mart, Target and Costco publish their own offers.
And while many of the deals are similar, here is a detailed look at what you can get at Staples on Black Friday. Keep in mind that you can shop online on Thanksgiving Thursday and pick up what you bought any time on Black Friday, November 24th. Staples stores open at …

Amazon Echo Show and Echo Dot are both on sale for a limited time

Almost two weeks after unveiling the revamped Amazon Echo, the Amazon Echo Plus and the Amazon Echo Spot, a couple of older Echo devices are being made more affordable. The Echo Show, which features a 7-inch screen, and the Amazon Echo Dot are both now on sale. The latter resembles a hockey puck on steroids. Both smart speakers are on a sale for a limited time only.

The Echo Show’s 7-inch screen allows you to make/take hands-free video calls, allows you to watch videos, and see song lyrics from Amazon Music. You can even monitor the baby’s room after installing cameras. With eight microphones …