Amazon Echo Pop vs. Echo Dot: Which should you buy?

It’s been a while since Amazon released a new Echo device, but the company surprised a lot of people with the release of the Echo Pop in 2023. Until then, the Echo Dot served as the best Alexa speaker under $50, but it seems that the company saw a need to come in with a smart speaker even cheaper.

Amazon Echo Pop vs. Echo Dot: Design

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Amazon Echo Pop review

(Image credit: Andrew Myrick / Android Central)

As written in the review, the Amazon Echo Pop really looks like an Echo Dot that was chopped in half. It features an omnidirectional design as the speaker will play audio facing in the direction that you place it. Meanwhile, the Echo Dot’s globe-like design attempts to provide 360-degree audio in any room that you place it in.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Header Cell - Column 0 Amazon Echo PopAmazon Echo Dot
Speakers1.95” front-firing speaker1.73-inch front-firing speaker
Hands-free Alexa
Motion Detection
Temperature sensor
Built-in eero
Matter support
Dimensions99 x 83 x 91mm, 196g100 x 100 x 89mm, 340g
ColorsCharcoal, Glacier White, Lavender, Bloom, Midnight TealCharcoal, Deep Sea Blue, Glacier White

When it comes to controls, the Echo Pop relies on three hardware buttons placed on the top, just behind the LED light bar that lets you know when Alexa is listening. Hardware buttons are hardly a bad thing, but controlling the Echo Dot is done using the built-in accelerometer as you’ll just need to touch the top to adjust the volume or invoke Alexa.

Amazon Echo Pop vs. Echo Dot: Sound quality

Amazon Echo Dot with Clock (2022)

(Image credit: Chris Wedel/Android Central)

On paper, the Echo Pop should beat out the Echo Dot with its larger 1.95-inch woofer compared to the 1.73-inch woofer found in the Dot. However, we still prefer the sound coming from the Echo Dot, regardless of how large the room is that you are placing it in. The Echo Pop is better suited for a bedroom or home office, whereas the Echo Dot works well in larger rooms, even if it falls short of the standard Amazon Echo in terms of filling the room with sound.

Something worth pointing out here is the fact that neither the Echo Pop or Echo Dot feature a 3.5mm headphone jack. It comes as a bit of a disappointment, as we would have liked to have the option to use either of these smart speakers as traditional speakers with a phone, tablet, or Chromebook.

Amazon Echo Pop vs. Echo Dot: Extra features

Amazon Echo Dot with a large red bow on top sitting on a wooden table

(Image credit: Jeramy Johnson / Android Central)

Over the past few years, there’s been a lot of focus on improving the overall smart home experience, but the fact remains that there are just too many different brands using their own proprietary systems. The Matter standard aims to remedy this, and the Echo Pop is the first Alexa speaker to come with Matter support out of the box. Thankfully, the Echo Dot wasn’t left out to pasture, as Amazon rolled out an update in late 2022 making 17 different Alexa products compatible with Matter.

One other common feature shared between the Echo Pop and Echo Dot is the ability for these speakers to be used as an eero Wi-Fi extender. When paired with a mesh Wi-Fi system like the eero Pro 6E, you can set these up and extend your Wi-Fi connection by up to 1,000 square feet while providing up to 100 Mbps speeds.

Where the Echo Dot truly begins to pull away is in some of the “extra” features that Amazon has implemented. These include the temperature and motion detection sensors that are built into the Echo Dot, which you won’t find in the Echo Pop. This might not be of much use to some, but being able to create an Alexa Routine to turn on your air conditioner when your home starts getting too warm is a nice “quality of life” improvement.

Amazon Echo Pop vs. Echo Dot: Which should you buy?

Amazon Echo Pop review

(Image credit: Andrew Myrick / Android Central)

The Echo Dot is definitely the “better” smart speaker compared to the Echo Pop, even with the latter coming in with a $39.99 price tag compared to $49.99. However, making the decision between these two really comes down to whether you want to take advantage of the built-in sensors and the size of the room that you’ll be using the speaker in.

If you want to have Alexa fill your living room with sound or like the muted color choices, then the Echo Pop is the way to go. But if you’re looking for a bedside smart speaker that can be used to help wake you up in the morning, then the Echo Dot is a fine choice.

Andrew Myrick
Senior Editor - Chromebooks, tablets, and wearables

Andrew Myrick is a Senior Editor at Android Central. He enjoys everything to do with technology, including tablets, smartphones, and everything in between. Perhaps his favorite past-time is collecting different headphones, even if they all end up in the same drawer.