Garmin thinks Amazon Alexa in your vehicle is the next big thing

Laverne Mann
October 19, 2017

Just say, "Alexa, ask Garmin ..." for exclusive turn-by-turn navigation. A light-up LED ring, which is also used as a visual representation of Alexa interactions, will glow green when it's time for you to pay attention and make a specific maneuver. That means access to Alexa's skills as you drive, only this is in a tiny package that sticks to your windshield. In a world where white earbuds, laptop speakers and Bluetooth devices have come to dominate the music-listening experience, a lot of people have forgotten how good a dedicated music speaker can sound. The premise behind the Sonos One makes sense, but unfortunately in practice, the device doesn't quite live up to its potential. Alexa and Garmin's partnership will definitely help the consumers accomplish numerous things inside their smart home, cart, or just about anywhere. But at $150, it's priced similar to Garmin's cheapest touchscreen navigation device, and as fun as having Alexa along for the ride is, she isn't necessary for finding the closest gas station, or the quickest route to grandma's. Additionally, the app lets you manage your saved locations, including home, school, and work. The Sonos One has a natural reduction in mid-range sound with more articulation from the highs and high-mids. And if you're already looking to shell out for a new Sonos speaker, the Sonos One is only a tad more expensive than the Play:1, although it's not hard to find a discount for the latter online. Then the answer is easy - the Sonos One is essentially a marriage of existing products.

One other major difference: The new speaker has a pairing button where the ΒΌ-inch threaded mount is located on the older model. If you want stereo sound from your Sonos One, you'll need another Sonos One (color doesn't matter) to create that. After that, Alexa will save it and you'll be able to start adding items to it. Same shape, same size, different speakers. The One only shares two physical parts with the Play:1, the bottom rubber feet and bottom plastic cap.

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Right out of the box, the Sonos One can do (almost) everything Alexa can do.

Including the Sonos One reviewed here, my Sonos system has six speakers: Garage, Kitchen, Living Room, Master Bedroom, Media Room, and Sun Room. And since Alexa doesn't support calls or text messaging, you can't use the Speak to place hands-free calls or send messages, like you can do with Google Assistant on Android Auto or Siri on Apple CarPlay. Forgot to turn off the house lights? When you do call out for Alexa, the volume on the Sonos one will duck out to a lower volume so that you don't have to shout.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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