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'Alexa, remind me to defrost the chicken in an hour' - this is how easy life can be with our smart gadget picks from Amazon. Image Credit: Unsplash/Brandon Romanchuk

Smart devices have become even smarter with built-in Amazon Alexa. The virtual voice assistant does everything and anything for you, and all you have to do is holler a command. Dim the lights, play Spotify, set reminders or even listen to the news. Alexa has your back. For your convenience, we sought out the best six Alexa-compatible gadgets on Amazon that will make your smart home even smarter. Don’t forget to become a Prime member before ordering; you’ll receive your package the very next day!

1. Best Overall: Amazon Echo (4th generation)

Pros

  • Excellent audio quality
  • Four microphones for distant voice commands
  • Compatible with smart home devices
  • Understands both English and Arabic

Cons

  • Wired

Amazon’s latest Echo speaker is a fantastic upgrade from the last. Plug in the device, connect it to your Wi-Fi and ask your all-rounded voice assistant to do anything. Say ‘Alexa’, followed by your command – it can set prayer reminders, check the weather, play your music and link with other Echo and Echo Dots around the house. Alexa handles your smart locks, lights and sensors that use Zigbee, too, so that you can voice control your home. Through automatic updates, your voice assistant will keep getting smarter, that way you’re never stuck with an obsolete device.

2. Best Display: Echo Show 8 (2nd generation) with Alexa (Arabic or English)

Pros

  • 8-inch HD touchscreen display
  • Built-in 13-megapixel camera
  • Uses display for outdoor cameras
  • Understands both English and Arabic

Cons

  • Wired
  • Video call limited to at-home calls
  • Features are region-specific
  • Expensive

Echo Show 8 works just like the Dot speaker, except it has an eight-inch high-definition screen to go with it. Besides answering your questions, setting reminders and performing its usual set of tasks, Alexa also plays movies and TV series from Prime Video and Netflix. What’s more is that you get access to a built-in 13 MP camera, which lets you make video calls, even doubling as a nanny cam for your pets that you can tap into via your Alexa app. This device is going to come in handy, if there are smart cameras around the house.

3. Best Security Camera: TP-Link Tapo Outdoor Security Camera

Pros

  • Two-way audio
  • Motion detector with built-in siren
  • Night vision of up to 30 metres
  • Water- and dust-proof

Cons

  • Rain might trigger a false alarm
  • Alexa needs a screen

TP-Link’s all-in-one outdoor camera is the best buy you’ll ever get with Alexa in mind. This Amazon-approved device listens to your voice commands using an Alexa screen like the Echo Show above. See who is at the door via the screen and ask them to leave the package by the door via the camera’s two-way audio feature. With this camera installed, you also get instant alerts to your phone whenever it detects any sound or motion, giving you the option to trigger a siren. Don’t worry about leaving the device out through all the seasons – its IP66 guarantees ultimate weatherproofing. 

4. Best for Video Calling: Facebook - Portal TV Smart Video Calling on Your TV with Alexa

Pros

  • 12.5 MP smart camera
  • Use Alexa on TV with streaming apps
  • Control smart home devices

Cons

  • Uses home sound system for audio
  • Only works with TV

Tired of video calling your loved ones on the mobile screen? Meet Portal TV by Facebook, which casts all your calls to the big screen at home so that the whole family can join in. This sleek device comes with a 12.5-megapixel camera that moves and pans when you do. Its built-in Alexa feature links to all the smart devices and cameras at home, immediately switching videos to show you who’s at the door. Portal TV brings you the hottest streaming apps from Prime Video to Spotify, all of which you can access by using just your voice.

Warranty: Amazon offers one-year extended warranty for Dh29, one-year accidental damage protection for Dh48 and two-year damage protection plus one-year extended warranty for Dh61.

5. Best Budget Lights: LED Smart Bulb, Baytion 10W Smart WiFi Light Bulb 2-Pack with Alexa

Pros

  • 16 million vivid colour options
  • Control lights via Alexa
  • Value for money

Cons

  • Alexa needs an Echo device to work

Ever heard of voice-controlled light bulbs? These two in a pack have 40,000 hours of lifetime, eight different light modes, scheduled timings and even Wi-Fi connectivity. Just ask Alexa to switch to a colour of your choice, set a timer or dim the lights down to a certain percentage. Baytion’s smart LED light bulbs work especially well with Amazon Echo devices, though you can run the controls just as well on your phone. It’s a perfect smart home addition for those who don’t want to leave their bed to turn the lights off. All you have to do is ask Alexa.

6. Best Smart Lock: August Smart Lock, 3rd Generation

Pros

  • Renter-friendly option
  • Pairs with Alexa and other assistants for voice commands
  • DoorSense sensor alerts if door isn’t locked properly
  • Locks and unlocks automatically when you approach it

Cons

  • Too dependent on smartphone to operate
  • Remote access requires an additional device to work

Upgrade your regular deadbolt with an August smart lock - it uses the August smartphone application to lock and unlock the door, but keeps the keyhole intact from the outside. So if you’re worried about completely transitioning to a smart lock, this gadget helps with the added security of a traditional key and even makes the installation renter-friendly. You’ll be relying on the August app for pretty much everything, from granting remote access to friends and family to keeping track of the times the door was locked and unlocked. Even if your hands are full of grocery bags, the app will automatically let you in after detecting your presence. And the best part, of course, is you can control it with Alexa voice assistant! Check out other smart locks.

7. Best Television:  LG C1 Series 4K Smart OLED TV, 2021

Pros

  • OLED (organic LED) TV, so consumes less energy
  • Built-in Alexa
  • Automatic sound and picture adjustment
  • Access to Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV+, Disney+, Hulu, Spotify

Cons

  • Expensive

LG's C1 Series makes it to the top 10 of nearly every review list all around the world - and all for good reason. Unlike LED TVs, an OLED screen is made up of pixels that light up individually, instead of relying on a backlight. All the greys you see when the screen is supposed to be pitch black is because you own a TV with LED technology. None of that is going to happen with your LG OLED 65-inch, which guarantees perfect black. Another added advantage of self-lit pixels is that the TV will consume less energy, and Dolby Vision IQ automatically adjusts the video to the brightness in your room. Its built-in Alexa ensures you don't have to rummage for the remote control - just use your voice. Check out other 65-inch televisions.

Our recommendations are independently chosen by Gulf News editors. If you decide to shop through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission, as we are part of Amazon Services LLC Associates Program.