The best cheap Alexa devices deliver all the perks of Alexa at a fraction of the price.
Not all smart home products have to be expensive. Amazon's Alexa-enabled devices are well within most people's budgets. At CNET, we've helped set up hundreds of smart devices for testing and review purposes to help you make the best choices. Between light bulbs, speakers, video doorbells and security cameras, it can get pricey if you stray further than Amazon.
The days of $180 Amazon Echo speakers and $200 smart cams are drawing to a close. Amazon's Echo Dot speakers cost $50, and they're usually significantly discounted. Blink cameras -- also from Amazon -- are similarly cheap, costing as little as $24 before discounts.
The question is, which devices should you buy to have an Alexa-powered smart home without blowing all your money? Here are the best ones on the market.
The cheapest smart speaker Amazon offers is the Echo Dot. This speaker has impressive sound quality for the size if you want to play music (Spotify Premium, Amazon Music, Apple Music and more), along with voice control and all the smarts of the higher-end, more expensive speakers. Place Echo devices in different rooms of your house for multiroom audio. Not only is the Amazon Echo Dot a reasonable $39, but you can also catch it on sale for much less.
The $75 Echo Show 8 is an Alexa-compatible display that marries all the voice assistance of a speaker to the touch controls of a tablet. The second-gen version, launched in 2021, includes a 13-megapixel camera that will follow you around the room while video chatting. No, it's not technically the cheapest Echo smart display, since the Echo Show 5 is $40 cheaper. But this device really gives you the screen size to use it often as a display -- not just a fancy clock. Plus, you can regularly find
Read more: The Case for Putting an Alexa Device in Every Single Room of Your Home
The Wyze Cam is one of the best super-cheap devices out there, making it the unbeatable affordable security camera system. With a small price tag and an impressive set of features, including weatherproof housing, sharper night vision, a wider field of view, a functional siren and more, the third-gen Wyze Cam is still the top-tier option to keep your home safe and secure on a budget.
In addition, with a single voice command you can throw the Wyze Cam's feed onto an Alexa-powered smart display, like the Echo Show 8.
Read more: Use Amazon Alexa Voice Commands to Control Your Home Security System
Another surprisingly affordable smart home gadget from Wyze is its original, white LED Bulb, which you can control with Amazon Alexa. It connects directly to a Wi-Fi network, so no smart home hub is necessary. These smart bulbs give you many of the smarts of a Philips Hue or Lifx bulb (though the features are a little more spare than Philips Hue) and they work nicely with Amazon's smart home ecosystem.
Ring's wired video doorbell is a super affordable smart buzzer. For $65, you get a Ring doorbell with live streaming, two-way talk and motion alerts. If you subscribe to Ring's $3-a-month service, you can get cloud storage, motion zones and a few other perks, too. While other developers have made super-cheap buzzers, this is the most reliable one we've tested -- and you can even find it on sale for under $50 if you keep an eye out during popular shopping seasons.
One category where prices still hover over $100 is smart locks. Wyze has a $100 smart lock that CNET hasn't reviewed yet, but many of the best smart locks -- including August's Smart Lock -- tend to be around $150 or more.