Offbeat How to clean your Alexa or Google Home speakers

16:01  12 july  2018
16:01  12 july  2018 Source:   cnet.com

The original Amazon Echo: Is it time to upgrade?

  The original Amazon Echo: Is it time to upgrade? The smart speaker category has exploded since the Amazon Echo first made its debut. Is it time for early adopters to consider a change?Seems quaint in hindsight, doesn't it? These days, Alexa is Amazon's rockstar, the golden goose that keeps delivering wins for the online mega-retailer. In nearly four years since Alexa's debut, the company has sold millions upon millions of Alexa devices -- 2.5 million in Q1 of this year alone, per Canalys. As for the Echo lineup, it's now a full-fledged family of devices that spans from the ultra-affordable Echo Dot to the refreshed, second-gen Echo, to the touchscreen- and camera-equipped Echo Show.

Got gunk on your Google Home ? Here's the best way to get stain-free smart speakers . by Molly Price. July 11, 2018 8:00 AM PDT. How to clean your dehumidifier. Jul 11.

In just a few, short years, smart speakers like Google Home and Amazon Echo have become ubiquitous. Calling them by their wake phrases is now second nature and even my grandparents and 4-year-old niece both know how to tell Alexa to change the color of the lights or play their favorite

I've owned a Google Home Mini for about six months. I only recently began to question how I should clean it when we moved a few miles down the road, and I inadvertently (and irresponsibly) tossed it into a box with some candles and knickknacks. I was rewarded with a smart speaker accented with red candle wax smudges. Yikes.

Read more: The complete list of Google Home commands 

If you have a smart speaker at home, it's likely in a busy part of the house. Smart speakers are best placed in the center of a home -- places like living rooms and kitchens. That also makes them vulnerable to stains. Whether it's a wayward coloring marker or a flying speck of spaghetti sauce, smart speakers are kind of defenseless when it comes to dirt. So, what's the fix for a smart speaker covered in goo? Here's what you need to know. 

Walmart, Target, Macy's launch deals ahead of Amazon Prime Day

  Walmart, Target, Macy's launch deals ahead of Amazon Prime Day <p>One good thing about the forthcoming Amazon Prime Day 2018 shopping bonanza is that it is prompting other retailers to launch competing “Black Friday in July” sales of their own.</p>Walmart also has some amazing deals in a new summer sale. For example, several TVs are cheaper than they were on Black Friday at Walmart right now. A Sceptre 50-inch 4K LED TV is now $229.99 at Walmart, compared to $300 on Black Friday 2017, while a 55-inch RCA 4K LED TV is $289.99 right now (compared to $340 on Black Friday and a list price of $700).

Google ’s smart speakers look great and I love the way the Google Home Max sounds. However, Google ’s fabric covers aren’t the simplest material to clean . Ian Knighton/CNET. Amazon Alexa .

The Google Home is the first major competitor to Amazon's Alexa speakers , and Google came out of the gates swinging. Now Playing: Watch this: How to use Google Home shortcuts.

Chris Monroe/CNET

Google Home

Google's smart speakers look great and I love the way the Google Home Max sounds. However, Google's fabric covers aren't the simplest material to clean. Google says the speaker shouldn't be washed, so definitely don't run any water over it. The Google support team I spoke with didn't recommend using damp cloths or any liquid cleaning products or sprays, noting that those methods could cause performance problems.

The recommended method? Google suggests wiping dirt and stains away with a dry cloth. The support team certainly doesn't want to suggest anyone bring any moisture near their products. That makes sense, but it doesn't seem practical. If you're willing to go against Google's suggestions, a slightly damp cloth solved my wax stain issue when a dry cloth just wasn't cutting it. 

This is the one thing every smart home needs

  This is the one thing every smart home needs Few things are more frustrating than poor Wi-Fi in a smart home. That's why you need a mesh network.The more devices you pile onto your network and the more widespread throughout your home they are, the more you'll notice holes in your Wi-Fi coverage.

Got gunk on your Google Home ? Here's the best way to get stain-free smart speakers . Apple was the only brand where I didn't have to chase down an answer on how to clean . The suggested method is listed in a useful support page for the HomePod.

Routines on a schedule. Both Google Home and Alexa speakers received recent updates that enabled routines -- or the ability to fire off multiple actions from a single command. Be respectful, keep it clean and stay on topic.

amazon-echo-lineup-02 © Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. amazon-echo-lineup-02 Ian Knighton/CNET

Amazon Alexa

Devices like the Amazon Echo Dot are pretty easy to clean, since there isn't any fabric involved. Wiping it down with a dry cloth should take care of any dust or grime that's settled on your Echo Dot. If you do purchase an Echo device with a fabric shell, the same dry cloth rule applies to be absolutely sure you don't damage the speaker. 

Amazon also recommends cleaning the outside of any Echo device with a dry cloth or a blow-dryer at low speed. That could alleviate surface dirt or dust in the device's seams and buttons. 

fl-homepod-reg0 © Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. fl-homepod-reg0 Tyler Lizenby/CNET

Apple HomePod

Apple was the only brand where I didn't have to chase down an answer on how to clean. The suggested method is listed in a useful support page for the HomePod. The speaker design here looks similar to the Google Home devices. The speaker is wrapped in what Apple describes as a "seamless mesh fabric." Here's the cleaning advice Apple offers HomePod owners: 

You can now use Alexa to control your DirecTV set-top box

  You can now use Alexa to control your DirecTV set-top box Amazon first announced an update to its Alexa Video Skill API back in March that would make it easier for set-top box makers to add DVR and playback controls via voice, but it’s taken a little while for its initial partners to enable the feature. TiVo added it to select devices back in May, and now DirecTV is joining the club with an announcement today that its Genie HR44 DVR, among other DirecTV set-top boxes, finally supports Alexa. With the update, you should be able to use your voice to ask an Alexa-enabled Echo device to record TV shows, change channels, and perform other playback functions for your DirecTV set-top box.

Now Playing: Watch this: How to combine Alexa devices to fit your needs. The Echo's main competitor -- Google Home -- does let you group speakers for synched audio Be respectful, keep it clean and stay on topic. We delete comments that violate our policy, which we encourage you to read.

Among Alexa -enabled speakers , the category-defining Amazon Echo is the best. In order to ensure that the experience we were testing came as close as possible to how home Spread all Google Home ’s tunes around your home with this affordable accessory to create a multiroom music system.

Clean with a dry cloth. If necessary, you can clean HomePod with a damp cloth.

Don't use window cleaners, household cleaners, compressed air, aerosol sprays, solvents, ammonia, or abrasives to clean HomePod.

Apple also mentions keeping the HomePod away from any sources of water that might expose it to drips or splashes. That's good advice for any smart speaker. 

All three speaker brands prefer a dry method of cleaning, seemingly to ensure no one takes a sopping rag to their smart speaker. Still, that might not be enough to get the stain off your speaker cover. So, if you absolutely can't wipe the stain off with a dry method and you're fully aware of the risks involved, consider trying a damp cloth. It might take one or two rounds of light scrubbing and drying to get through the stain, but that's better than ruining your smart speaker with a liquid cleaner or too much water. 

Amazon sells more than 100 million products on Prime Day .
Amazon said online shoppers purchased more than 100 million products worldwide during its Prime Day sale, despite glitches on its mobile app and websites that prevented customers from placing orders. The company's shares rose about 0.5 percent to touch a record high of $1,858.88 in early trading.The world's largest online retailer said it recorded the largest daily sales for Amazon's Echo range of speakers, helped by heavy discounts. Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote and Echo Dot were the best-selling devices.This year Prime Day, Amazon's summer marketing event, started on July 16 and lasted 36 hours.

—   Share news in the SOC. Networks

Topical videos:

This is interesting!