Amazon Announcement Recap: Devices

Amazon has made a huge announcement on 9/28 for their new products.
We’re here to give you a short recap on all their new devices they have shown us.

Home Robot – Astro

Amazon now created a home robot named Astro! Astro can help check in on your home and look for people/pets. It also can actively patrol your home as well, using Ring’s subscription service. Amazon’s David Limp stated that he sees Astro as a way to help give peace of mind for families, helping them interact and check in on older family members, for example.
Limp said, “It’s not just an Alexa on wheels, it has eyes on the screen and even cup holders, because why not.”
It is designed for “privacy at every turn” as Limp stated. You can turn on a “do not disturb” setting to minimize how much Astro moves day or night. Amazon also built the device to do as much computing in its body as possible, rather than relying on an internet connection.

Astro will be available for $1,000. You’ll need an invite to order one when they launch.

Ring Always Home Cam


Ring’s mission is to make neighborhoods safe. One way Amazon has made this possible is creating the Ring Always Home Cam.
This device will  fly around your home at a regular interval, or when it hears something. Privacy is built in, Ring said, by covering the camera when it’s docked for charging.

Amazon isn’t going to start full-on selling it immediately. Instead, it’s going to start with an invite-only beta. It’ll cost $250.

Amazon Glow: A Video Chat Device For Kids

Amazon Glow, projects computer images onto a table, where kids can interact with it. There’s an 8-inch LCD display so the kids can see their loved one as well. It allows video calls for kids more interactive!
The way it works is that there will be an app that the adult on the other end of the call can use to interact with books, draw, play puzzles and more. On the kid’s side, the Amazon Glow projects what the adult sees on their tablet onto the surface in front of it. It’s designed to be interactive and to keep the kid’s attention. Amazon has partnered with Disney, Mattel, Sesame Street and Nickelodeon for interactive books, puzzles and all sorts of other items.

Amazon said the $249 device will have a privacy shutter, and kids can only call people who’ve been preapproved by their parents.

Blink Products


Amazon’s Blink cameras is expanding its product offerings. The cheap stick-up cameras are expanding to include a video doorbell. Now you can buy a $49 video doorbell under the Blink brand that’s wired or wireless. The company’s also going to start offering a floodlight.

Smart Thermostat

Amazon announced a competitor to Google’s Nest. Amazon says it’s working hard to lower its carbon footprint and limit energy use by its own products, but it also wants to help you lower your own energy use. Amazon announced a certified smart energy thermostat powered by Alexa. It’ll work with most existing HVAC systems and is made in partnership with Honeywell.

Its new Smart Thermostat will cost $59.99, which is half the price of the average smart thermostat sold on Amazon, the company said.

Echo Show 15

Amazon released a new release of a tablet that they state “changes the way we think of tablets, creating a wall-mounted device designed to give us information and control over our smart homes.” the Echo Show 15 comes with a new widget-based interface that’s meant to offer people access to information like the weather, shopping lists, sticky notes and a shared family calendar. You can also see which smart devices are on or off through the Echo Show. It’ll also show you feeds from the Ring video doorbell overlaid on what you’re seeing.

The Echo Show 15 can be mounted in portrait or landscape mode. You can watch TV on it as well!

Amazon has also released new updates for Alexa, privacy promises, and updates on the Fire TV. 

**ALL IMAGES ARE FROM AMAZON. WE DO NOT TAKE RIGHTS TO ANY IMAGES SHOWS.***

Amazon Sidewalk And What This Means For Your Connection

Amazon Sidewalk … How Does It Work And What Does This Mean For Your Connection

Starting June 8, Amazon’s smart devices will automatically be linked together all across the U.S. as a part of their Amazon Sidewalk network.
We’re here to tell you what happens when it launches and what this means for you and your internet connection at home.

What Is Amazon Sidewalk

Sidewalk is a shared network that is supposed to help their devices work even when you personally do not have internet connection in your home.  Amazon Sidewalk connects with your neighbors connection so that way their products are still able to work even when you or your neighbors have weak or no connection.  The goal is to create a low bandwidth network bridging all devices so that users can reboot malfunctioning equipment and even locate missing objects outside of the house.
However, Amazon Sidewalk runs off of device owners’ personal Wi-Fi which posts some security concerns.
Operated by Amazon at no charge to customers.

What Devices Support Sidewalk

  • Ring Floodlight Cam (2019)
  • Ring Spotlight Cam Wired (2019)
  • Ring Spotlight Cam Mount (2019)
  • Echo (3rd gen and newer)
  • Echo Dot (3rd gen and newer)
  • Echo Dot for Kids (3rd gen and newer)
  • Echo Dot with Clock (3rd gen and newer)
  • Echo Plus (all generations)
  • Echo Show (all models and generations)
  • Echo Spot
  • Echo Studio
  • Echo Input
  • Echo Flex
  • Tile. Bluetooth tracker owners can use to keep tabs on their keys, wallet or other important items

Benefits And Concerns About Amazon Sidewalk

This seems to be ideal for users who want their Ring or Echo to continuously work even when their Wi-Fi is down.  Having the capability to still use your phone while seeing your cameras and/or Echo to still play music can help in multiple ways when your Wi-Fi connection is weak … But do you ever think how strange it is that you are using your neighbors connection to be able to make your devices work?
Take your Echo for example.  Sometimes your light on it will show red or even yellow when your connection is weak or does not work.  Instead of not having the device working, your device instead takes the connection from your neighbor to be able to allow the Echo to function normally … It’s like nothing ever happened, except that you are basically taking someone’s connection from their home to run your devices.  Strange to think about, isn’t it?  Your completely throwing out the idea of keeping your connection protected by sharing your connection with other Amazon users.

So, the benefit for this is that your Amazon Devices will continue to work, but the concerns are whether or not your internet connection is actually secured since you’re sharing your connection with other Amazon users.  The biggest issue is thinking if hackers will find ways to get into your accounts due to this.

Ways You Can Opt Out Of Sidewalk

Using The Alexa App

  • In your Amazon Alexa app, select the “More” icon at the lower right hand corner of the screen
  • Go to “Settings” > “Account Setting” > “Amazon Sidewalk.” (Just a note: if you’re not connected to any Echo or Ring devices, you will probably not see this option.)
  • Use the toggle to disable Sidewalk

Using The Ring App

  • In your Ring app, go into your Control Center by tapping the the three-lined icon in the upper left-hand corner of the screen
  • Select “Sidewalk” and use the slide button to opt out
  • You’ll be ask to confirm your opt-out. You can opt back in the same way.

You’re not stuck using Amazon Sidewalk if you don’t want to!