All in all, as a first generation effort, this product does a great job. You'll need to download the Garmin Speak and Alexa apps if you haven't already, sign into your Amazon account, and start pairing. There is a very slight delay, but surprisingly fast considering it is being done mobile. So what is positive about this product? Try to figure out a place to secure the Speak Plus because the adhesive is not easy to remove and re-position later. But still not horribly unhappy with the price.
Also the Garmin Speak app can save your home, work, and school locations. My car already has built in navigation so I wasn't necessarily looking for that capability but having Amazon Echo Alexa access in my car was intriguing. The field of view is somewhat narrow though 82 degrees , so you can't see much peripherally, such as cars going the opposite direction in the next lane. The Speak Plus has a Bluetooth radio, so you can connect it to your smartphone and to your car's audio system. I will review this in two separate aspects: as an Alexa device and as a navigation device. Its a great idea but I will sit this one out until updates and a lower price make this a better product. That initially seemed like an unnecessary step, but in practice really didn't bother me that much.
I didn't want to have my hotspot on all of the time for the features. You have access to your home automation you have setup which is a huge plus. I arrived home 15 minutes earlier than my wife leaving from the same event. Also it can probably be improved in the future via software. I'm not such a huge fan of having to permanently add an adhesive sticker to my windshield so that the Garmin Speak can sit. For now, Garmin Speak is the easiest way to use Alexa in the car, but that will change once Alexa becomes integrated with cars in the coming months. It can also control Alexa-enabled smart home devices, such as lights or a thermostat.
I have tried it a few times and it works well but I primarily bought this as an Echo Dot replacement. You can still use the Garmin Speak if you don't have that capability in your vehicle, you will just need a second wire going from the 12v outlet plug to your stereo's aux input. It uses my bluetooth and plays through the car stereo. Installing: Not hard, but first be sure to consider the location with your windshield visor both up and down as you may do what I first did and placed it too close and the visor hid the device from view. Very disappointing, since this means you will always be dependent on the plug.
I would recommend this to a friend I have wanted an Amazon Echo in my car since I got my first Echo in early 2015. Driver assistance settings toggle the sensitivity of forward collisions, toggle an alert for departure, and toggle alert for lane departure. Most smartphones these days also come with some sort of personal assistant built in, also for free. I contacted support and was told to update in thru the computer and the garmin express software. The overall device footprint is small, very small and I was quite surprised at how small the thing actually is.
. The screen also displays warnings for lane departure and front-side collision, if it senses you're too close to the car in front of you. Actually, when it works and set up properly my goodness this is a great product. Due to the white on black - even in bright light, this screen is quite visible. I also think the display could be better.
I would recommend this to a friend The first thing I will say is the concept of having Alexa in the car with you is actually kind of nice. I can turn on lights and turn them off with the same commands I use at home on my devices. It comes with a power cord to plug into a cigarette lighter plug, and has a jack to plug into the aux outlet in your car if you don't have bluetooth audio on the radio that is in your car. You can use it stand-alone with the little speaker in the Speak but I highly recommend using Bluetooth if you can. It's manageable, but I fear that less tech-savvy users will struggle with setup. First of all the mount is permanently attached to the device, so you have to mount it to the windshield.
On the way home, it even recommended a shortcut to get to my part of the neighborhood. Playing music was easy too and even with loud music, when you say Alexa it lowers the volume and waits for your command. The Garmin Speak works best in vehicles that have Bluetooth enabled car stereos. After a month of if being okay, It started turning orange and said it was finishing setup. It's awesome when it works, but it seldom does and if I can't count on it to work, then what's the point? McLaughlin is a New York-based writer and editor with more than a decade of experience covering technology. This lights up in blue when Amazon Alexa is functioning, green when approaching a turn, orange when transferring photos and videos, and other colors appropriate to the action occurring on the device.
Software can easily be updated and so can the Garmin skill. If you go under 3 bars… you get the lost connection red ring of death until you get better signal. I am sure it will be a bargain at Christmas time. I woulld recommend the Speak for daily use, I hope Garmin sees this and considers the changes to the app and software. Now, on to the navigation side. I placed the Speak right below the rearview mirror and routing the power cable was a little tedious but I managed it. It's nice to have Alexa in the car, but since its just utilizing the phone app I could have used that without the Garmin Speak.
Well, after the morning drive to work with this little thing I decided to keep it. So far that is all I see when I set it up. I like the hardware and they give you more than enough cable to mount the Speak anywhere. Probably the worst is getting guidance started. Another benefit of being connected is re-routing when traffic jams occur. If you have any further questions or suggestions, please reach out to us at tellgarmin garmin. Ask Alexa for music by artist, title or genre Spotify not supported at this time.