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The best Alexa devices of 2024: Expert tested

I tested the best Alexa devices including the Echo Show 8, Echo Dot, and Ring doorbell that can assist you at home or at the office.
Written by Maria Diaz, Staff Writer
Reviewed by Kayla Solino
Echo Show 8 | Best Alexa device overall
Echo Show 8 (2023) at Amazon's Devices and Services event in 2023
Echo Show 8
Best Alexa device overall
View now View at Amazon
Echo Dot | Best Alexa device on a budget
Echo Dot with children's drawings
Echo Dot
Best Alexa device on a budget
View now View at Amazon
Ring Battery Doorbell Plus | Best Alexa-compatible video doorbell
Ring Battery Doorbell Plus
Ring Battery Doorbell Plus
Best Alexa-compatible video doorbell
View now View at Dell
Echo Studio | Best Alexa smart speaker
Echo Studio on a desk next to a microphone and headset
Echo Studio
Best Alexa smart speaker
View now View at Amazon
Echo Hub | Best Alexa device for a smart home
Echo Hub
Echo Hub
Best Alexa device for a smart home
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Since its debut in 2014, Amazon's Alexa has become America's leading voice assistant and smart home automation system, as it's built into millions of smart home devices, aiding users with everything from locking doors, dimming the lights, playing songs, and even calling for help, all with a simple voice command. 

Also: Everything you need to build out your smart home

Alexa is integrated into different smart home devices like smart hubs, Amazon Echo speakers, smart thermostats, smart lightbulbs, and home security cameras

What is the best Alexa device right now?

After testing almost all of the Amazon Echo devices featured on the e-commerce site at this time and dozens of Alexa-compatible devices, the best Alexa device is the third-generation Amazon Echo Show 8. It's a smart display with a spatial audio speaker that delivers rich sound quality and a full Alexa experience. I compiled a list of more of the best Echo and Alexa-compatible devices below. 

The best Alexa devices of 2024

Pros & Cons
  • Easy to use
  • Screen adjusts as you approach
  • Room-filling sound
  • Not many customization options
More Details

Echo Show 8 features: 8-inch touchscreen display | 1080p resolution | 13MP camera | Spatial audio | Zigbee, Matter, Thread | Price: $150

The latest Echo Show 8 got a big upgrade from previous generations in late 2023, with a new spatial audio speaker on the back that delivers rich, crisp, room-filling sound. The new Adaptive Content feature shows simplified content when you glance at the screen from a distance and switches to more detailed content when you approach. 

After using it daily for months, the third-generation Echo Show 8 has become my go-to shopping list maker, entertainment center while cooking, and assistant to control smart devices around my home. I use it to ask Alexa for the weather while I'm setting up the kids' backpacks on school nights and to run my smart home routines to turn on the backyard lights. 

Review: The Echo Show 8 is the best smart display and speaker combo available

Pros & Cons
  • Great sound
  • Affordable
  • Easy setup
  • Sound isn't as full as other smart speakers
More Details

Echo Dot features: Smart speaker | Voice control | Smart home hub | Motion & temperature sensors | Price: $50

If you're looking to save some money on a smart speaker with Alexa built-in, the $50 Amazon Echo Dot is the perfect choice and the best way to get the most bang for your buck. Aside from using this Alexa speaker to control your smart home, the Echo Dot has great sound quality to play your favorite music, podcasts, or audiobooks.

Though it doesn't have a smart display, the fifth-generation Echo Dot can be the perfect bedside companion. It lets you easily set alarms by asking Alexa or using the Alexa app and controlling Alexa-compatible smart home devices triggered by the temperature or built-in motion sensors.

The Echo Dot can be paired with another for a stereo pair and can simultaneously play music or other audio on all Echo devices in your home for a multi-room experience. 

Pros & Cons
  • High-quality, clear video
  • Removable rechargeable battery
  • Package detection
  • Paid subscription required
  • No pre-roll or Bird's Eye View
More Details

Ring Battery Doorbell Plus features: Head-to-toe video | 1536p resolution | Two-way talk | Person & package detection | Quick-release battery pack | Price: $180

If you're looking for the best smart home devices to build a full Alexa ecosystem experience in your home, you can't go wrong with the Ring Battery Doorbell Plus to watch over your front door. 

An Echo Show paired with a Ring doorbell can quickly display who's at your front door when someone rings the doorbell, all hands-free. All Ring devices offer a seamless integration with Alexa, letting users use their voice and touch to control them and stream video feeds.

Review: The Ring Battery Doorbell Plus is the best battery video doorbell for Ring fans

Pros & Cons
  • Crisp sound
  • Fire TV support
  • Spatial audio
  • Larger form factor
  • Expensive
More Details

Echo Studio features: Smart speaker | Dolby Atmos | Spatial audio | Voice-controlled | Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Zigbee | Price: $200

The Amazon Echo Studio is the company's best smart speaker overall, as a high-end option that combines the benefits of premium Dolby Atmos spatial audio with smart home capabilities. 

The Echo Studio has become a staple at the heart of our TV room over the past year, as I've used it as a speaker and as my home theater audio output. I use it for the benefit of voice control with Alexa, for its smart home capabilities, and, most of all, for its outstanding sound quality. 

An Echo Studio also works as a smart hub for Zigbee and Matter-compatible devices.

Review: Echo Studio: Better than ever, but is that enough?

Pros & Cons
  • No ads
  • Customizable widgets
  • Simple smart home experience
  • Navigation can be laggy
More Details

Echo Hub features: Smart home control panel | 8-inch touchscreen | Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Zigbee, Matter, Thread | Wall-mounted | Price: $180

The Amazon Echo Hub is a new smart home controller that offers a new experience for smart home enthusiasts, especially those interested in the Alexa ecosystem. Unlike an Echo Show, the Echo Hub lets you customize your widgets and everything displayed on your device, letting you easily control your smart lights, Ring security system, smart plugs, and more. 

Also, unlike the Echo Show, the Echo Hub doesn't have a spatial audio speaker, though Alexa does respond when you ask questions. The Echo Hub plays music and audio over a preferred speaker in the Alexa app during setup. 

Testing the Echo Hub for the past few weeks has proven a great start for a smart home panel in the Alexa ecosystem, though it does have some lag in navigation and some bugs that can be worked out with software updates.

Review: Amazon's Echo Hub solved my biggest problem with being a smart home enthusiast

What is the best Alexa device?

The Amazon Echo Show 8 is the best Alexa device because of the combination of all its far-reaching capabilities and features. But there are many other great choices for Alexa smart devices available. 

Here is a look at how you can outfit your home with some of the best Alexa devices and speakers.

Alexa deviceZDNET's takePriceFeatures
Echo Show 8Best overall$1508-in smart display | Spatial audio
Echo DotBest for a budget$50Vibrant sound | Temp & motion sensor
Ring Battery Doorbell PlusBest video doorbell$1801536p head-to-toe video
Echo StudioBest smart speaker$200Dolby Atmos | Fire TV support
Echo HubBest smart home panel$180Zigbee, Matter & Thread | No ads

*MSRP at the time of writing. Please note that actual prices may vary depending on available sales, deals, discounts, and coupons.

Which is the best Alexa device for you?

Not sure which Alexa device is best for you? These suggestions can help you find the best Alexa device for your needs.

Get this Alexa device...If you want...
Echo Show 8A smart display with a spatial audio speaker with built-in Alexa
Echo DotA small smart speaker with great sound, especially for its affordable price
Ring Battery Doorbell PlusA video doorbell that integrates seamlessly with Alexa and Echo devices
Echo StudioSpatial audio in a smart speaker with booming sound and Alexa built-in
Echo HubA smart home panel to control your smart devices without distractions

How did I choose these best Alexa devices?

As a smart home reviewer, I've exhaustively tested every single Alexa device I've recommended on this list, down to the recommended alternatives below and many more that unfortunately didn't make it on the list. 

Aside from testing and only recommending the products that I'd buy myself or recommend my best friends and family to buy for themselves, I also take into account what others say. As a writer, I read what other reviewers think about these products and read what buyers write on their own reviews after purchasing them. 

What can Alexa devices do?

Amazon Alexa is an AI-powered virtual assistant that can help you complete tasks with voice control. Alexa is built into various smart home devices, including speakers and displays. It also integrates seamlessly with other smart home devices, like Ring, Blink, Sengled, Cync, Amazon smart devices, and many more. 

What types of Alexa devices are there?

Millions of devices are compatible with Amazon Alexa, but we focused on the best Alexa devices that would either offer the voice assistant built-in or would work as an easy integration with it. 

If you're looking for home security with Alexa, a Ring Alarm system is the way to go, but if you're looking for a way to watch your favorite Netflix show while you're cooking, an Echo Show is also a great pick.

Where can you buy Alexa devices?

Many retailers sell Amazon devices, but not all of them offer the best price or shipping terms. ZDNET conveniently includes links that will offer some of the best and most competitive pricing available via trusted retailers. These best Alexa device retailers generally include Amazon, Best Buy, and Walmart.

Are there alternative best Alexa devices worth considering?

Though the Alexa devices we've chosen above are great recommendations, they're not the only options you have when looking for the best Alexa devices. Here are other devices to consider:

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