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This thing needs some post release development efforts ASAP. Steer clear for preschoolers..
on June 14, 2018
I regretfully have to award this product 2 stars...
Let me start off by saying I LOVE my original Echo and Echo Dot, and I am knee deep in smart home tech so I am by no means a novice when it comes to this stuff. I was on the original pre-order for the first launch of the Echo and have been an avid supporter ever since. We have Fire TVs, Kindles, Kindle Fires, etc...
So when Amazon announced a Kid's Edition Echo Dot, I was ecstatic to get my 3.5yr old daughter her "Very own Alexa"
What a disappointment, I've been messing with this thing a better part of 4 hours and can't even get it to stop playing "Hoochie Coochie Man - Muddy Waters" any time my daughter asks it to "play music". Why would you not default to children's music??? Why are you pulling from my library, how do I make this stop? Out of all the Amazon devices I've purchased, I expected this one to be a breeze however this is the most convoluted mess I've encountered. I finally forced it into opening "iHeartRadio Family" and it immediately started playing "Nick Radio" blaring "Monster" by Eminem. I get it, it's edited i'm not an overprotective parent but seriously? Where are preschooler songs? I set the age to 2-3 on the app, do SOMETHING that is catered to that age range (I am fully aware that Amazon does not control what iHeartRadio chooses to broadcast on their "kids" stations, my issue is the fact that it defaulted to a broader age range station rather than something actually for my preschooler daughter).
Here is an example of one of the most simple of requests:
Me: "Alexa, play kids music"
Echo Dot Kids Edition: "I'm sorry, I cant find any kids songs"
O__o Wat? What would you say... you do here Echo Dot Kids Edition?
Everything is excessively complicated, it either needs excessive context and extra steps for everything or it'll provide no feedback when commands are accepted so I or my daughter never know whats actually going on. See how asking to be told a story went...
Daughter: "Alexa, tell me a story"
Echo Dot Kid's Edition: "The family all jumped in the car, the girl had a snake in a cup, the dad slammed the breaks and veered off the road"
I can't even figure out what story this is, I ask Alexa "What story is this?" she begins to define WHAT a story is WHILE the story is still being told in the background of Alexa's response. I resort to the app finally to discover the story is called "The New Pet", how is this kid friendly?
I really should have tried this out BEFORE giving it to my daughter, now I can't get rid of it because I'd feel terrible taking it away.
Honestly you guys, this thing is a nightmare. The only reason why I gave it 2 stars is because at the end of the day it still is an Echo device and as I said before, I love our Echoes just think the whole kid edition is a joke in its current state.
What's even crazier is that I can't remember if I have ever left a review on anything I've ever bought on Amazon (That's a LOT of things we are talking about) but this is such a disappointing mess that I wanted to help others avoid the frustration I'm now going through. Give it a year for this to get fixed and maybe they can update it into something friendly for preschoolers.