I recently got my hands on the Echo Frames (2nd Gen) | Smart audio sunglasses with Alexa | Classic Black with new polarized blue mirror sunglass lenses, and I must say, they have exceeded my expectations. These smart sunglasses are not only stylish and comfortable to wear all day, but they also come packed with several impressive features.
Overview of Echo Frames (2nd Gen)
The Echo Frames (2nd Gen) are smart audio sunglasses that come with built-in Alexa integration. With these frames, you can enjoy hands-free access to Alexa, allowing you to make calls, listen to podcasts or Audible books, set reminders, get the news, and control your smart home. What’s great is that they also feature open-ear audio with Auto Volume, which directs sound to your ears while minimizing what others around you can hear. Plus, the frames automatically adjust the volume based on the noise level of your environment.
Product features and description
These frames offer more than just smart functionalities. They also come with a VIP Filter feature, which allows you to customize notifications from your most important contacts and apps. You can even call your top VIP with just a single press and hold of the touchpad, making it more convenient to stay connected.
In terms of design, the Echo Frames are lightweight, comfortable, and available in a stylish Classic Black color. They are also IPX4 splash-resistant, making them suitable for both water and sweat. Additionally, you have the option to choose between prescription-ready frames, polarized sunglass lenses with UV400 protection, or blue light filtering lenses.
When it comes to battery life, the Echo Frames impress with over 2 hours of talk time, Alexa interactions, and media playback over a 14-hour day. On a full charge, you can get up to 4 hours of nonstop listening.
One of the standout features of these frames is their focus on privacy. The microphones are designed to respond to the voice of the person wearing the frames, and you can easily turn them off with a double press of a button. Rest assured, Amazon values your privacy and does not sell your personal information to others.
the Echo Frames (2nd Gen) combine style, functionality, and privacy in a single wearable device.
Initial concerns about appearance
When I first purchased the Echo Frames, I was worried about how they would look. Specifically, I was concerned that they would be bulky, especially the temples where most of the electronics are located. However, after wearing them for almost a year, I haven’t received any negative comments about their appearance. In fact, I haven’t even noticed anyone giving me strange looks. It seems that because people tend to look directly at each other’s faces, they don’t pay much attention to the temples. Overall, my initial concerns about the frames’ appearance were unfounded.
Temple design and electronics
The temples of the Echo Frames house the majority of the electronics, and I was initially worried that they would be noticeable or uncomfortable. However, I have found the design to be quite comfortable and not at all intrusive. The frames are lightweight, and I hardly notice the temples while wearing them. The placement of the microphones is also well thought out, as they are positioned near the mouth, resulting in excellent call quality and clear audio pick-up.
Inoffensive and versatile frames
In terms of aesthetics, the Echo Frames have a versatile and inoffensive design. They can be worn by people of all ages and genders without looking out of place. I like to think of them as having a new-nerdy-chic style. They are not overly flashy, but they still have a modern and trendy appeal. Whether you’re at work, running errands, or simply enjoying the outdoors, the frames blend seamlessly into any environment without drawing unnecessary attention.
my experience with the aesthetics of the Echo Frames has been positive. They offer a sleek and stylish design that is suitable for various occasions, and the concerns I initially had about their appearance were proven to be unwarranted.
Primary uses for Echo Frames
The Echo Frames (2nd Gen) offer a range of functionalities that make them a convenient and versatile accessory. With hands-free access to Alexa, users can make phone calls, listen to podcasts or audiobooks, set reminders, add to their to-do lists, get the latest news, and even control their smart home devices. The frames feature open-ear audio with Auto Volume, which directs sound to the wearer’s ears while minimizing the noise heard by others nearby. This feature is particularly useful in crowded environments.
Phone call quality and microphone placement
One of the standout features of the Echo Frames is their ability to make phone calls with excellent clarity. The microphone placement ensures that the wearer’s voice is accurately captured, while also minimizing background noise. I have personally used the frames to make calls, and both parties on the line have reported good sound quality with minimal background interference.
Audio experience for music and podcasts
While the audio experience for music and podcasts on the Echo Frames is not exceptional, it is still enjoyable. The sound quality is decent, provided that there is minimal background noise. The frames are not designed to deliver deep bass, but they work well for casual listening or as background noise while working. However, it’s worth noting that there is some sound leakage, so if you are in close proximity to others, they may be able to hear snippets of what you’re listening to.
Benefits in home and outdoor activities
The Echo Frames offer convenient functionality both at home and during outdoor activities. Whether you need to make a hands-free call while doing chores around the house or want to listen to music while going for a walk, the frames provide a seamless and accessible experience. They are particularly beneficial for outdoor enthusiasts, such as horseback riders or individuals engaged in activities that require the use of their hands, as they eliminate the need to constantly reach for a phone or wired earphones.
Limitations in urban environments
In urban environments with high levels of background noise, the audio experience on the Echo Frames may be affected. The frames do their best to minimize background noise, but in extremely noisy settings, it can still be challenging to hear music or podcasts clearly. However, for everyday use in less noisy environments, the frames perform well and deliver an enjoyable audio experience.
Battery life and overall satisfaction
The Echo Frames offer a decent battery life, lasting over two hours of talk time, Alexa interactions, and media playback on a 14-hour day. On a full charge, they provide up to four hours of non-stop listening. While the battery life could be improved in future iterations, it is generally sufficient for daily use. Overall, I am satisfied with my purchase of the Echo Frames. They have proven to be a practical and innovative accessory, particularly for making phone calls and enjoying hands-free audio experiences throughout the day. Although there is room for improvement, such as adding more control over volume and refining notification settings, the frames have exceeded my expectations and have become an indispensable part of my daily routine.
Usefulness in varying background noise
I have been using the Echo Frames (2nd Gen) for a while now, and while I appreciate their functionality, I have reservations about their effectiveness in environments with varying background noise levels. In quieter settings or during outdoor activities, the frames work exceptionally well. I can listen to music, podcasts, or make phone calls while still being aware of my surroundings. This feature has been especially useful for me as a parent, allowing me to engage with my child while staying connected.
However, in more urban settings with fluctuating noise levels, such as busy sidewalks or traffic-filled streets, I have found the frames to be less effective. The volume adjustment is not responsive enough, leading to situations where I either miss out on what I’m listening to or find the volume uncomfortably loud when the noise subsides. This limitation has been a drawback during my daily walks or when commuting in the city.
Desired features for improvement
While the Echo Frames offer impressive functionality, there are a few additional features that would greatly enhance the overall user experience. Firstly, I would love to see the addition of a reading light. This would allow me to read in bed without disturbing my partner, providing an added level of convenience and versatility.
Secondly, a find-my-glasses feature would be highly beneficial. Losing or misplacing glasses can be a frustrating experience, and having a built-in tracking feature would alleviate this issue. This functionality would ensure that the frames serve a purpose even when not actively in use.
I am pleased with my Echo Frames and find them ideal for specific scenarios such as work, outdoor activities, and parenting. However, I believe that improvements in background noise adaptation and the addition of new features would make them even more versatile and appealing to a wider range of users. Despite these reservations, I am satisfied with my purchase and have chosen to upgrade to the 2nd generation frames.
Addressing privacy concerns
Privacy concerns are a common consideration when it comes to smart devices like the Echo Frames (2nd Gen). However, Amazon has taken steps to address these concerns and prioritize user privacy.
The frames feature microphones that are designed to specifically respond to the voice of the person wearing them. This means that they will not capture and process audio from other people in the vicinity. Additionally, the microphones can be turned off with a simple double press of a button, providing users with control over when the frames are listening and when they are not.
Amazon also ensures that they are committed to protecting user privacy and does not sell personal information to third parties. This reinforces the trust that users can have in the company when using their Echo Frames.
Comparison to other devices and apps
Compared to other smart devices and apps, the Echo Frames (2nd Gen) offer a unique balance between functionality and privacy. While other devices may have similar features, such as voice assistance and audio playback, the Echo Frames prioritize user privacy by minimizing the capture of audio from others and providing easy controls to turn off the microphones.
This distinguishes the Echo Frames from other devices that may constantly listen or have more intrusive privacy practices. With the Echo Frames, users can enjoy the convenience of hands-free access to Alexa and audio content, without sacrificing their privacy and security.
In a world where privacy concerns are paramount, the Echo Frames offer a refreshing option that allows users to stay connected and enjoy their audio experience with peace of mind. With their focus on user privacy and robust privacy features, the Echo Frames (2nd Gen) are a reliable and trustworthy choice for those looking for smart audio sunglasses.
Update on Reliability Issue
Experience with the frames becoming unreliable
Since purchasing the Echo Frames (2nd Gen), I have had mixed experiences with their reliability. Initially, I was impressed by their functionality and the convenience of having hands-free access to Alexa. However, over time, I started experiencing issues with popping and cracking sounds, especially during music or interludes in audiobooks. Unfortunately, these issues have only worsened with time, causing me to question the overall reliability of the frames.
Request for resolution and impact on functionality
In an attempt to find a resolution, I contacted customer support and requested assistance with this reliability issue. However, I was disappointed to find that there was no clear option for a warranty resolution or online support. It seems that contacting customer support directly through chat or phone is the only available option.
The impact of these reliability issues on functionality has been significant. The popping and cracking sounds disrupt my listening experience, particularly when enjoying audiobooks or podcasts. The erratic and glitchy interface, along with uneven volume levels, further detract from the overall usability of the frames.
Updated review with decreased rating
Considering these reliability issues and their impact on functionality, I have decided to revise my initial positive review and lower my rating. While I still find value in the Echo Frames for spoken voice content like podcasts and audiobooks, I cannot recommend them for music unless at very low volumes. It is disappointing that these issues have not been addressed by Amazon, especially considering the potential of these frames and the importance of customer feedback.
although I am overall satisfied with my purchase and continue to use the Echo Frames on a daily basis, I am disappointed by the lack of resolution for the reliability issues. Amazon could greatly improve their product by addressing these issues and actively engaging with customers facing similar problems.
Warranty and Customer Support
Difficulty with return/replace process
As with any product, there may be instances where customers experience difficulties with the return or replacement process of the Echo Frames. While the specific details of these issues were not mentioned in the reviews, it is important to note that customer support is available to assist with any concerns. Amazon has a dedicated customer service team that can help address any issues and provide guidance on returning or replacing faulty products. It is always recommended to reach out to customer support for assistance if you encounter any issues with your Echo Frames.
Suspected cause of audio issue and firmware update
One of the reviews mentioned a possible audio issue with the frames, specifically accidental touching of the side of the frames causing notifications to be dismissed or announced again, or for playback to stop/start randomly. This could be a software or firmware-related problem that could be resolved with a firmware update. It is advisable to regularly check for firmware updates for the Echo Frames and install them to ensure optimal performance and functionality.
Erratic interface and battery life
Some users also mentioned experiencing issues with the interface and battery life of the Echo Frames. These issues could be due to various factors such as software bugs or individual usage patterns. If you encounter any erratic behavior in the interface or notice a significant decrease in battery life, it is recommended to contact customer support for assistance. They can help troubleshoot the problem and provide appropriate solutions.
Continued satisfaction despite issues
Despite the mentioned issues, many users expressed their satisfaction with the Echo Frames overall. They praised the hands-free functionality, the ability to listen to videos and make calls without bothering others, and the convenience of being able to access Alexa anywhere. The frames were also commended for their lightweight and comfortable design, making them suitable for all-day wear. Additionally, users appreciated the privacy protections built into the frames, such as the microphones designed to respond only to the wearer’s voice.
while there may be some challenges with the return process, audio issues, interface, and battery life, the Echo Frames still received positive feedback overall. It is important to remember that customer support is available to address any concerns and that regular firmware updates can potentially resolve software-related issues. Despite these minor setbacks, the Echo Frames offer a unique and convenient audio experience with hands-free Alexa integration, marking them as a valuable addition to everyday life.
Overall assessment and recommendation
After using the Echo Frames (2nd Gen) with the new polarized blue mirror sunglass lenses, I can confidently say that these smart audio sunglasses have exceeded my expectations. They have truly been a life-changing device for me, providing a hands-free experience while carrying out various activities. The open-ear audio system delivers sound directly to my ears without blocking out the surrounding environment, making them perfect for my horseback riding sessions.
Pros and cons summary
The pros of the Echo Frames include their lightweight and comfortable design, IPX4 splash resistance, and availability in prescription ready frames. The audio quality is impressive for an open-ear system, and the battery life is decent, providing over 2 hours of talk time and Alexa interactions.
On the downside, the frames may pick up commands from multiple Alexa devices in the same room, causing some inconvenience. Additionally, the battery life could be improved for longer usage.
Can I use the Echo Frames to make calls and listen to audio hands-free? Yes, the Echo Frames allow you to make calls, listen to podcasts or audiobooks, and control your smart home, all without using your hands.
Can I customize which notifications I receive on the Echo Frames? Yes, the Frames have a VIP Filter feature that allows you to choose which notifications to receive from specific contacts and apps.
Are these sunglasses suitable for outdoor use? Yes, the Echo Frames are available with polarized sunglass lenses that offer UV400 protection, making them perfect for outdoor activities.
Are the Echo Frames compatible with other virtual assistants like Google Assistant or Siri? Yes, the Frames support access to Google Assistant and Siri from a compatible device, providing additional flexibility.
Overall, I highly recommend the Echo Frames (2nd Gen) for anyone looking for a convenient and stylish way to stay connected while enjoying the outdoors. With their hands-free features, open-ear audio technology, and customizable notifications, these smart audio sunglasses are a game-changer in terms of functionality and convenience. Plus, with their sleek design and option for prescription lenses, they are a fashionable accessory that can seamlessly blend into your everyday life.