Amazon’s $250 Smart Oven is a microwave, air fryer, food warmer, and oven in one
- The $249.99 Amazon Smart Oven makes Alexa your personal chef.
- While it looks like an everyday microwave, it’s actually a microwave, air fryer, food warmer, and oven in one.
- Alexa’s not built into this product, but you can issue cooking commands to a paired Echo speaker, and the microwave will respond.
- Alexa takes the lead through the cooking process using preset temperatures and recipes tailored to the food you’re making.
- You can preorder it now and the Smart Oven will ship on November 14.
There are only so many smart speakers Amazon can sell. After all, unlike smartphones, most people don’t feel a need to upgrade their Echo every couple of years. So to keep people buying, Amazon can’t just build on old models; it needs to consistently expand into new product categories.
This isn’t Alexa’s first foray into the kitchen. The company released the $59.99 AmazonBasics Microwave around this time last year. But the $249.99 Smart Oven is a larger, smarter, and more feature-packed cooking device. It’s not just an oven: It’s an oven, microwave, food warmer, and air fryer in one.
I spent a few minutes playing around with the Amazon Smart Oven, though I wasn’t able to cook anything in my limited demo. I observed it baking a small batch of chocolate-chip cookies; it seemed to be getting the job done. Here are my first impressions.
How it works
There are two ways to control the Amazon Smart Oven. First, you can do it the old-fashioned way and press the buttons. The pad includes keys that easily wap between the four modes — Microwave, Convect, and Air Fry — as well as those that activate traditional microwave functions like Defrost, Preset Cook, Auto refrost, Keep Warm, and Auto Roast.
But the more interesting method is through Alexa.
To clear up the matter that some reporters (myself included) were confused about at first: No, Alexa is not built into this thing. There’s no microphone and no speaker.
Rather, you pair this device with an external Echo speaker, and issue your kitchen commands there. Don’t worry if you don’t have one; the Smart Oven ships with an Echo Dot included. If you don’t fancy having that in your kitchen, you can also use the Alexa app on your phone. There’s an Alexa button on the microwave; pressing it awakens the assistant on the paired Echo device.