TTS or Alexa or Google home in every room

Hi there,

I have an Alexa (Amazon echo dot) in my living room right now. Even as her abilities are limited at present, it is smart in a way and I’d like to have something like it in every room. I could buy now six echo dots or six Google homes (if they’re released for Germany). But apart from the money, I then have dedicated, more or less proprietary hardware. Now I read something on Alexa being able to run on non-echo Hardware (like a pi or something) - I guess Google is on something similar.
So as I do have a (wired) loudspeaker in every room, I could easily add a microfon to them. So my question is, should I go with something like this and look for some ceiling-mounted microphones or should I put Amazon or Google Hardware in every room?

Ultimately I suspect it depends on how much you want to fiddle with it. It would certainly be cheaper and ultimately more flexible if you put a microphone in every room and did DIY from there. But you are in for a ton of testing and fiddling and trial and error before you get it right and even then run the risk of it never working quite right. On the other hand you can get Echos or Google Homes working in less time and with less fiddling but you will be stuck in the relatively closed ecosystems of which ever you selected.

I am aware that Alexa or Alexa like things can be run on other platforms. I am unaware whether Google Home can at this time.

One thing to note is that both the Echos and Google Homes have multiple microphones and lots of smarts built into them to filter out and identify voice in otherwise noisy envorinments. You will be unlikely to reproduce all of this. But a single microphone and some DIY may very well be more than good enough.

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Hi Rich,

as usual some straight-to-the-point answer! I guessed the same, but I’ll wait for Google home to be shipped in Germany. Alexa is cute, but not yet fully capable of everything I’m hoping to get from those smart assistants. I guess I’m too much into J.A.R.V.I.S.! :grin: :robot:

Hey binderth,
what’s your Outcome on this Thread?
I have a AlexaPi and it works ‘Okay’, the Echo I have is way better, but it depends on the Use Case.

I tried Google home and Alexa echo dot and in my opinion the echos work better.
As for TTS - Google home should do it - but they didn’t. Perhaps 2.3 is better here, I have to test if time is handy. alexa doesn’t do TTS normally - but it seems to be ‘hacked’: Released: Openhab2 Amazon Echo Control Binding (controlling alexa from openhab2) - I didn’t do this until now, as I fear the constant scraping will be noticed by Amazon sooner or later…?

Do you want it to speak out your comments with TTS?
There’s a channel for TTS, didn’t work at first try, and didnt invest time in this since then.
But besides that, everthing worked really well with the Echo but also with the SampleApp from GitHub on my Pi.