Our home is all-in with Alexa-enabled smart devices. I considered getting an Amazon Echo Spot and using it as a bedside clock, but I didn’t see much advantage to that. Then I saw the upcoming Sandman Doppler from Palo Alto Innovation. It may look like a bedside alarm clock, but it is a complete information hub powered by Alexa.
The Sandman Doppler is a 21st-century take on the alarm clock most of us had growing up. Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Alexa-enabled, it is ready to help you start your day knowing what to expect and how to get the most out if it… even before you have had your first cup of coffee.
Because it has Bluetooth, it can connect to your smartphone or tablet.
Because it has six high-speed USB charging ports on the back, it can be used as a nighttime charging hub for all your devices.
And as an added benefit, you can organize all your cables beneath it.
And because it is Alexa-enabled, it can respond to a growing number of voice commands and Alexa skills. That means you can use it to, for example,
- Turn on or dim smart lights throughout the home
- Play favorite music and radio stations
- Open or close garage doors
- Lock the front door and activate the home security system
- Have Alexa tell you a joke (but trust me, Alexa’s jokes are terrible!)
The Doppler also has two programmable buttons that, thanks to a companion iOS or Google Play App, can be programmed to immediately call up specific tasks of your choosing. For example, you could program one button to start your morning news channel and the other to turn on the bedroom and bathroom lights so long as you are using smart bulbs and they are connected to your Alexa system.
The smart clock even runs on an open-source code so owners can add the features they most want Doppler to control. It has dual speakers that have been engineered to deliver excellent sound, an RGB LED clock face and 1.8” digits for easy viewing of the time. And, as you might expect, Doppler automatically adjusts the brightness of the screen based on light sensitivity.
Finally, in addition to telling the time, Doppler’s can show you the date, the weather, stocks and traffic routes. They can even be customized to the color of your choosing.
The Sandman Doppler looks like a great addition to any Alexa-enabled home but will be equally welcome to those who are new to Amazon’s smart ecosystem. It is currently available for pre-order starting at $119 and will ship in July of 2018. Check it, and its older sibling the Sandman, here.