Amazon rolls out Echo Auto for Alexa voice-activated capability in almost any car

Though automakers such as Nissan have started offering Alexa connected services in newer vehicles, Amazon targets older, unconnected vehicles with its new Echo Auto device. (Image courtesy of Nissan North America)

Amazon announced last week the launch of Echo Auto, an in-car device that brings the familiar Alexa system to your car.

Though many new vehicles now offer Android Auto and Apple CarPlay capability, Amazon has been late to the game. The Seattle-based tech giant is attempting to catch up by bringing its familiar in-home software to the many drivers of older cars, trucks and SUVs.

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The device is connected via Bluetooth or can be plugged into an auxiliary jack, but users can also purchase a third-party transmitter to connect and broadcast via an FM frequency. Amazon will even offer even a cassette tape adapter.

Once connected, Echo Auto works like any other voice-controlled Amazon device, with music and audiobook selection, calendar functionality, the ability to set reminders and even smart home features if your device is connected to the thermostat, lights, garage door and more in your house.

If you’re worried about road noise or general conversation setting off the device inadvertently, Amazon has built in eight microphones to help filter out any noise that isn’t a specific voice command.

Those interested in pre-ordering can put in a request for an invitation now and save 50 percent off the Echo Auto’s $49.99 price.

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