Last winter, I — along with countless others — received an Echo Dot as a Christmas gift. Since then, Alexa has worked its way into my daily routine, enabling me to set alarms, turn the lights on and off, and play music, all with just my voice. But after testing out the $49 Google Home Mini, I’m almost ready to switch to team Google. Not only is the Mini more attractive than the Dot, but it also performs miles better as a stand-alone speaker. While Alexa still rules in some areas, the Google Home Mini is poised to eat into Amazon’s lead.
While Amazon’s smart speakers are very functional, they’re not very attractive. The utilitarian Echo Dot, for example, is a black, hockey-puck-size device that doesn’t inspire any feelings of warmth.
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