Google Home vs Amazon Echo – how to choose

Google Home vs Amazon Echo – how to choose

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Full written review: TechGadgetsCanada.com

Smart digital assistants are growing in popularity, big time. In Canada, there’s really only two choices right now: Amazon Echo and Google Home.

Each brand has different versions of their assistants, usually a full size and a mini.At their core, these smart speakers/digital assistants operate largely the same no matter which size you choose, so we’ll focus this comparison on the base models; the full size Echo and Home.

Google Home vs Amazon Echo: Who you talking to? Human or Robot?

Each of the home devices has a different Assistant personality:

Google has the Google Assistant, aka “Google”. Amazon has Alexa.

While both have female voices by default, Google Assistant has a more normal and natural sounding voice and delivery. Alexa’s delivery is rather robotic and vaguely European even though I’ve selected Canadian English as her voice.

Will one of those voices please you more than the other? Maybe. At the moment, my preference is for Google Home.

While you have some choice for accent changes with Alexa, for the moment you don’t with Google Home. Here’s how to do it:

To change your Google assistant’s voice:

Go to Google Home -Hamburger Menu- Settings or More Settings- Preferences- Assistant Voice.

✅ Voice WINNER: Google Home

So how do you know which of these smart speakers is for you? Here are some of the other choices you’ll have to make when deciding between Google Home and Amazon Echo.

Do Google Home and Amazon Echo do the same tasks?

Yes. By and large these devices perform all the same basic functions:

playing music (Google Play Music, Amazon Music, Spotify)
answering questions
setting timers
controlling Smart Home gadgets like lights, thermostats, door locks and more
telling you about your day; see more below
getting news, weather and traffic info
making conversions: money, measurements, time
make phone calls
look up phone numbers (and call them)
add items to to-do lists and create reminders
make calendar appointments; depending on your OS, see below
Want to know how to talk to Google Home and Philips Hue smart lights?

Google Home vs Amazon Echo: Are you Apple or Android?

Both Amazon Echo and and Google Home are compatible with many different smartphone platforms, including Android, Apple and more.google home speaker assistant what why how to

Google Home is definitely made to work closely with its own Pixel line of smartphones, and other Android phones and you may enjoy a more seamless experience if this is the platform you’ve got.

As far as Amazon Echo goes, the device may seem to be geared towards the Android world, but again, there’s a lot you can do with your Apple iPhone.

Can Alexa link to Apple Calendar?

With Echo you *can* add your calendar to Alexa’s brain. She’ll integrate with Apple Calendar/iCloud, Microsoft Outlook and Office, plus the G-suite of apps and functions from Google. Want to hear about your day or list of appointments from your Apple calendar? Alexa will tell you.

✅ Compatibility WINNER: Amazon Echo

Google Home vs Amazon Echo: Smart home control

Both Home and Echo can control your smart home devices, and the list is pretty much universal, though if you’re wondering about controlling a specific smart home toy, it’s a good idea to check it. But when it comes to door locks, lights and thermostats, they’re both pretty much the same.

If I noticed any difference its that it’s much much easier to add a single new device to Echo. For example, when I wanted to add a single new LIFX light, with Google Home I need to uninstall and reinstall the whole LIFX lineup of several bulbs, whereas with Echo, I just add the one light and it works great.

Google Home vs Amazon Alexa: Price

Amazon Echo costs $129 CAD. Google Home is $179CAD. Given that Echo has more versatility and functionality, and it costs less, this battle goes to Alexa.

✅ Price WINNER: Amazon Echo

So who’s best? Amazon Echo or Google Home?

All things considered, Amazon Echo does more and is more versatile, speaking to different platforms and devices (not just Android) and it costs less.

If you’re looking for a smart home digital assistant and speaker to start out with Amazon Echo is the winner.

✅ OVERALL WINNER: Amazon Echo

Do you agree or disagree? Have any questions about what these devices can do? Ask in comments .

34 Comments

  1. i agree with this video alexa is awesome

  2. Amazon echo is what I use

  3. Thanks for the video, I am a quadriplegic and I have started using a Amazon Alexa Echo dot to make my life more independent. I live in South Africa so not all the services are available,.

  4. I have a google home hub and a home mini in charcoal, both are great devices, music is great when bass and treble are turned up full blast and both devices are playing together, since seeing the Amazon Echo 2nd Gen on your video, this device looks Awsome with Alexa and the coloured circle is amazing when it lights up after calling Alexas name, also Alexa uses national rail uk for train times and journey planning which is brilliant where as google uses the trainline uk which isn’t very appealing, 10 out of 10 for Alexa

  5. Was hoping to get a comparison of sound quality as well – bass, depth and punch, clarity, frequency response and harmonic distortion.

  6. Hi, can you play your own downloaded music from android thru Alexa? and can you tell Alexa to pause and skip the music and also to turn the volume down and up? coz i saw one of the videos on youtube that google home can do all of these but im not sure for Alexa…thanks

  7. You mentioned Apple Music, at this time that has been made available on Echo and works great.

  8. Agree! Alexa has been a great DI

  9. Totally agree Echo is the winner for me!! Thanks for the great review

  10. With the Google Home…and using Apple Music…can you access your iTunes library?

    What if you want to access your iTunes library and you're an Android user? Is there no way to do that using the Echo using some "smart app"?

  11. I like your review very much. Thanks. But I guess is better to use US dollars to compare next time.

  12. agree, echo is the winner

  13. Very interesting review. Liked your structured observations, analysis, and conclusions. Some topics missing: using either of these devices with IFTTT, home automation hardware, or using either of them as an intercom. How well do they interact (if at all) with desktop computers? What is the sound quality difference between these devices? Can either of these devices be connected to a radio tuner (or have one built-in) to call up certain AM or FM stations?

  14. Are either of these cordless?

  15. Google assistant can be changed and one of male voice sounds better.

  16. It's great to see such a well-done 3rd party review!

  17. I wanted to know how they compared sound quality wise but she didn’t talk about it at all.

  18. I have no idea what you were doing about the light thing for google home, but you definitely messed it up somewhere.

  19. But I like the robotic voice of alexa tho…. I guess its just down to prefrences it seems.

  20. AMAZON SALES THINGS …GOOGLE KNOWS THINGS …YOU DECIDE… …CHOOSE WISELY.

  21. I started with the echo and found it to be very reliable as well as flexible. I guess it depends on your wants and needs. I wanted to make my house a smart house and I have and wanted the echo for voice control. Echo does an excellent job with smart things. I am not sure if google home can do multi room music but I find this a huge plus for the echo. The price point for the echo device's are great. Even getting older generations are still a good value. Thanks for the comparison reviews.

  22. Good video . Explained it perfectly and helped me decide which I will buy .

  23. I’m getting an Alexa the one she had but the (sandstone) white for Christmas 2018 can’t wait

  24. Nicely done Erin; Comprehensive and professionally done. BTW, you did not cover sound. In this case, I favor the Google Home.

  25. Which is smarter in answering questions? Can you ask either 1 to wake you up 20 mins later for a quick nap? Can you ask them to sing a song?

  26. Hey Guys, go check out 'Story Stream skill on the Alexa Skill store! It lets you stream high-quality stories on your Alexa enabled devices including Bose QC35ii & Jabra Headphones! Stories have great narrations w/ effects!😉

    Pls like this comment so people can see ❤️

  27. What should i choose can u tell me

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