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Amazon Echo Dot vs. Echo Dot Kids Edition: Which should you buy?

Echo Dot 2
Echo Dot 2 (Image credit: Jeramy Johnson / Android Central)

Amazon Echo Dot (4th gen)

Amazon Echo Dot 4th Gen

The new Amazon Echo Dot (4th gen) brings a new form factor to the Echo Dot lineup with improved sound quality. However, this is not an ideal solution for potentially messy kids, the warranty is nowhere near as good, and you have to pay extra to access the expanded parental controls.

Amazon Echo Dot (4th gen)

Well-rounded

All-new design
Improved sound
New color options
$10 cheaper
Not ideal for kids
Lack of extended warranty
Have to pay extra for Amazon Kids+

Amazon Echo Dot Kids (4th gen)

Amazon Echo Dot Kids Edition 4th Gen

This is the obvious choice if you want to put Alexa in your child's playroom or bedroom. The included warranty and Amazon Kids+ are almost worth the price of admission. However, if that is worth the extra cost to you will depend on your family.

Amazon Echo Dot Kids (4th gen)

Kid-centric

Alexa Blueprint helps kids create Skills
2-year worry-free guarantee warranty
1-year Amazon Kids+ included
Fun design choices
$10 more expensive than Echo Dot
Kids+ only supports four music services

Amazon Echo Dot vs. Echo Dot Kids: How do they stack up?

At first glance, deciding between the Echo Dot (4th Gen) vs Echo Dot Kids should be pretty simple and straightforward. If you want an Echo Dot for anywhere in the house, then get that one; however, if you want one for your kids or like the fun animal prints, then the Echo Dot Kids is the better pick. Let's look at the specs.

Echo Dot (4th gen)Echo Dot Kids (4th gen)
ConnectivityDual-Band Wi-Fi
Bluetooth A2DP
Dual-Band Wi-Fi
Bluetooth A2DP
Speaker1.6-inch Front-Firing Speaker1.6-inch Front-Firing Speaker
ColorsCharcoal
Glacier White
Twilight Blue
Tiger
Panda
Comes WithPower AdapterPower Adapter
Alexa Guide for Kids
PrivacyMic On/Off ButtonMic On/Off Button
Access to Amazon Kids and Kids+YesYes
Access to Amazon Kids+Yes, 1 Month FreeIncluded, 1 Year Free
Dimensions3.9 x 3.9 x 3.5 inches (100 x 100 x 89mm)3.9 x 3.9 x 3.5 inches (100 x 100 x 89mm)
Weight12 oz. (341.3 g)12 oz. (341.3 g)

As for the Echo Dot Kids(https://www.androidcentral.com/amazon-echo-dot-kids-edition-4th-gen-review), this is essentially the same as the standard Echo Dot with a couple of new paint schemes. The real value comes in the "extras" that are available with the Echo Dot Kids. If parental controls and family-friendly content are vital to your plans, then you'll enjoy one year of Amazon Kids+ and a 2-year warranty. This warranty provides a full product replacement, regardless of what happens to the Echo Dot.

This is extremely tempting if you are clumsy or children are running around the house. Unfortunately, the Echo Dot (4th Gen) only has a 90-day warranty, meaning you could end up shelling out another $50 if something goes awry. Other differences come in the speaker and microphone departments. These are speakers, after all, so these are important.

The Echo Dot Kids is essentially the same as the Echo Dot 4th-generation with some new color choices.

The Echo Dot (4th Gen) comes equipped with a much more powerful 1.6-inch speaker, combined with four total microphones. However, a new product means improvements to these various hardware inclusions. The Echo Dot Kids includes the same 1.6-inch speaker, so your kids will enjoy their music much better than before. Plus, they will be able to hear Alexa's responses easier.

Chances are if you care about the sound that much, you'll end up having picked up an external speaker that is compatible with either Echo Dot. So, you don't have to worry too much, but the included 3.5mm headphone jack on these devices is really convenient.

Amazon Echo Dot vs. Echo Dot Kids: Is Amazon Kids+ worth it?

Amazon Echo Dot Kids Edition (4th Gen)

Source: Ara Wagoner / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Ara Wagoner / Android Central)

Speaking of Amazon Kids+, there are a few things to take note of. The included subscription with the Kids provides a plethora of parental controls and a multi-platform subscription, which offers music, audiobooks, TV shows, movies, games, and much more for your kids. You can stream music from Radio Disney or access the Parent Dashboard, which provides Parental Control features.

Additionally, if you end up deciding on the standard Echo Dot (4th Gen), then you can add Amazon Kids+. This will cost you an extra $2.99 per month, after your first month free, and will still give you the same access as if you purchased the Echo Dot Kids. Amazon also offers a yearly subscription at $69 for Prime members or $99 if you aren't a Prime subscriber.

Opting for Amazon Kids+ means that you'll have kid-friendly content accessible across an array of devices. These products include the Echo family and Fire tablets, Kindle tablets, iOS, and Android. So this is the perfect way to keep your children occupied and looking at the "right" content, regardless of the platform.

Amazon Echo Dot vs. Echo Dot Kids: Which way should you go?

Echo Dot 4th Gen 1

Source: Jeramy Johnson / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Jeramy Johnson / Android Central)

On the one hand, you have a basic, no-nonsense speaker that's a little bit less expensive and blends in pretty well with the rest of your home. But, on the other hand, the Echo Dot Kids features either an adorable tiger or panda print, which you won't be able to grab and put on your bland Echo Dot.

The biggest difference comes down to whether you plan on paying for an Amazon Kids+ subscription. It's included with the Echo Dot Kids, but you'll have to shell out an extra $3 per month or $69 a year (for Prime subscribers), to get access to all parental control features and kid-friendly content.

So which is the better Alexa speaker to get? The final decision should be simple. If you have kids and want all that Amazon Kids+ offers, you should go for the Kids. On the other hand, unless you're a clumsy adult or want that awesome Rainbow scheme, you should get the Echo Dot.

Andrew Myrick
Andrew Myrick

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.