My First Echo

My First SonyBack in the 1980s, SONY introduced a series of small-scale electronics for kids. They came in brightly colored plastic with large buttons that were easy for little people to control. The line was called “My First Sony.”

SONY even introduced this line with a slick TV ad. Take a moment and watch it HERE.

The tag line in the ads was “What I love is my first Sony. It won’t be your last.”

That was over 30-years ago.

Voice Activated Devices

This past Christmas, my fiancé, Sue, gave me an Amazon Echo Dot. Why a Dot and not the larger version? Because I said I didn’t want one of these things. Heck, I own a “million” radio sets.

But she figured for $29 it would make a fun stocking stuffer.

Amazon Echo’s and Google Homes’ were the hot Christmas gift of 2017. Amazon said that they sold “tens of millions” of Echo devices all over the world and that it’s Echo Dot and Fire TV Stick with Alexa voice remote were its most popular products across all categories.

Our Family Got Bigger

The Echo Dot was so easy to set-up and begin using. You basically plug it in. Then use your smartphone to connect it up to your WiFi and begin using it.

Like most new owners, the thing we used it for was to play music.

Now the Dot has a speaker akin to the one in my iPhone7. It reminded me of the sound that I used to get out of my first Zenith transistor radio back when I was in grade school. But then, it sounded great listening to the oldies on WMEX-FM via TuneIn radio. It’s the way I originally heard all of these songs.

My fiancé is not a fan of my many remote controls and especially all the buttons they have, but she very quickly fell in love with Alexa and controlling everything with her voice. We both did.

Alexa quickly became the third member of our family.

I told Sue that I could see us getting an Amazon Echo with the bigger speaker in our future.

Happy Valentine’s Day

That future came on Valentine’s Day 2018. I gifted the love of my life jewelry, candy, a romantic dinner out and she gifted me an Amazon Echo. Oh, there were many other things she gifted me, but the second Echo device is what I remember most and quickly put into service in our living room replacing the location previously occupied by the Dot.

When we got back home from our Valentine’s Day dinner, we sat on our living room couch, and asked Alexa to play our favorite love songs.

No Going Back

When I think of how quickly Alexa has taken over our lives – and we haven’t even scratched the surface of all she can do – I realize that there’s no going back.

It’s like giving up the microwave oven in the kitchen, or power windows in the car, or Google search or the internet. Once you have made these new innovations a part of your life, you won’t ever wish to return to a life before them.

The TV remote control made it possible to quickly change channels without leaving the couch. The video cassette recorder and then the DVR made it possible to no longer be chained to the TV network’s schedule. Netflix made watching a series, a binge affair.

Now these voice activated devices are changing the world of audio.



So, What Happened to the Dot?

If you’ve read this far, you might now be wondering what happened to our Amazon Dot.

It’s been re-deployed to the bedroom where it now puts us to sleep and wakes us up.

And it sounds great! Thanks to my BOSE Wave Radio.

Amazon Echo Dot & Bose Wave Radio

Let’s see the next holiday on the calendar is St. Patrick’s Day. I could see getting a couple more of these Dots to connect to our other BOSE Wave Radio and other radios I have in each room of our home.

Alexa, welcome to the family.




Filed under Education, Mentor, Radio, Sales

7 responses to “My First Echo

  1. Jerry Stevens

    I didn’t want a smart speaker either. Mine was acquired when Google offered the Mini for $29 with a $24 Credit to be spent at any of a number of stores through Google Express. So it cost $4. Smart move on Google’s part. Now we own two minis and the full size Google Assistant. I too use them for a lot of things but the implication for radio is that I listen to more local radio stations not fewer. It’s just that they aren’t local to where I live. Music stations with little to no local flavor don’t interest me but there are still some stations in cities where I used to live that make me feel like I’m there for a visit.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. We got our first Echo Dot free with credit card points and bought a blue tooth speaker for it. Not long after that, I contacted my streaming company to see if they were developing an Alexa skill. We got our second dot for Christmas and our station’s skill last month. So now I can say Alexa, open WAVQ Radio and choose between live steam or a list of podcasts to pick, or ask what’s playing. I also paired it with my Outlook calendar and with the AnyList App to help stay organized. It is a useful little device.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thom Moon

    Call me old-fashioned, but I don’t get it. Why do you have a Dot for your Bozo WaveRadio? What does Dot do the radio doesn’t? Someone gave me (“gifted” is not a verb, Dick (signed) The Grammar Police: “We serve and correct”) a Dot Echo. I plugged it in; set it up; played with it for 10 minutes; disconnected it; put it back in the box and returned it to the giver and said, “Gee, thanks, but I don’t see the point.” As you can tell, I’m not a big believer in “convergence.” Yes, my phone has a camera, but my real camera has a much better lens and focusing system. I have a gizmo that predates Bluetooth that digitally transmits audio from my computer to my stereo and that performs nicely for listening to streaming in “hi-fi.” I want a simpler life – not one totally connected to – and dominated by – technology.


    • Their will always be a segment of the population that prefers a different path. I respect that this technology is not your “cup of tea.” However, among my contemporaries, voice activated technology is being quickly embraced. As it proliferates, it changes old habits and choices for new ones.

      News broke today in the radio trades of Facebook introducing its own voice activated device this coming July.

      These devices are clearly the future.

      Thank you Thom for sharing your perspective.

      Oh, with regards to “gifted” being used as a verb: “People talking about gifting items may sound new and grating, but according to the Oxford English Dictionary, “gift” has been a verb for nearly 400 years. It meant “endow,” as in “He has been gifted (or endowed) with a photographic memory,” but more relevant to our discussion today, it also meant “to give” as in to give a gift. For example, “The History of the Church and State of Scotland,” written in the 1600s, includes the line “The recovery of a parcel of ground which the Queen had gifted to Mary Levinston.””


  4. Pingback: Radio Has an Addiction Problem | DickTaylorBlog

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