Echo Auto vs Roav Viva Pro: Which Alexa Car Device Finishes 1st?

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echo auto vs roav viva

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In this article, I compare the Amazon Echo Auto vs Roav Viva Pro gadgets that put Alexa in your car.  I’ll weight the pros and cons and provide helpful side-by-side comparison tables that include both the Roav Viva Pro and Standard Edition as well.

So what are the main differences?

The main differences are that Echo Auto has eight microphones and Roav Viva Pro has four, plus Echo Auto also has more streaming music options, including Spotify. Roav Viva provides more connectivity options that include CarPlay, Android Auto, and FM radio transmission. They both give you a wide range of options for navigation and driving directions, including Waze, Google Maps, and Apple Maps.

I’ll start with an overall comparison table so you can see the main differences side by side. Then, I’ll compare Echo Auto vs Roav Viva side-by-side in each of the following categories:

VR-ROOM, VR-ROOM! We’re off to the races🏎️🏎️!

Echo Auto Vs Roav Viva Pro and Standard: Quick Comparison

The following table provides a side-by-side comparison of Echo Auto vs Roav  Viva Pro vs Roav Viva Standard Edition.

Amazon Echo Auto
By Invitation
Turn-By-Turn Directions: Yes
Power: Cigarette Lighter
Connectivity: Mobile Phone Bluetooth or Aux Port
Number of Microphones: 8
Alexa Voice Calls: Yes
Alexa for Music: Yes
Alexa Drop In: Yes
USB Ports: 0
Roav Viva Pro
Available Now
Turn-By-Turn Directions: Yes
Power: Cigarette Lighter
Connectivity: Bluetooth, iOS Carplay, Android Auto, Aux Port, or FM Transmission
Number of Microphones: 2
Alexa Voice Calls: Yes
Alexa for Music: Yes
Alexa Drop In: No
USB Ports: 2
Roav Viva Standard
Budget Option
Turn-By-Turn Directions: Yes
Power: Cigarette Lighter
Connectivity: Bluetooth, iOS Carplay, Android Auto
Number of Microphones: 2
Alexa Voice Calls: Yes
Alexa for Music: Yes
Alexa Drop In: No
USB Ports: 2

Done Waiting

echo auto vs roav viva proOK, I’m officially done waiting for my Amazon Echo Auto invitation. I simply couldn’t live without Alexa in my car for another second, so I went and bought the Roav Viva Pro.

I have had the privilege of testing my friend’s Echo Auto though, and I love it. She loves it too apparently because she won’t give it back 😭. LOL.

So far, the Roav Viva Pro is a close second, barring a few nits.

In this post, I’ll compare the two products and I’ll throw in a comparison with the Roav Viva Standard edition as well.

The Bottom Line? If you were one of the lucky ones to get the steep discount on the Echo Auto and love Alexa as much as I do—BUT you are sick of waiting for your Echo Auto to ship—get the Roav Viva Pro.  It has a few shortcomings, but it gets you most of what you love about Alexa NOW. 😊


Roav Viva Pro by Anker

Echo Auto Vs Roav Viva

SEE IT AT AMAZON

USB Ports Plus a Whole Lot More

Anker makes some great USB-port car chargers that let you plug a device into car’s cigarette lighter, and then wala!  You have multiple USB ports where you can plug in your wireless devices. This is great for older cars that do not have a built-in USB port. Anker’s new product line, dubbed Roav Viva, adds a very significant upgrade to its USB port chargers: Amazon Alexa! You plug this square little device into your car’s cigarette lighter, and then you get most of the benefits of Alexa on the road. This includes news, weather, sports, stocks, games, music, and much more. You also get some great turn-by-turn direction capabilities with your favorite navigation apps like Waze and Google Maps.  You just ask Alexa, “Alexa navigate to the nearest gas station using Waze.” Cool

Where the Echo Auto only connects to cars that support Bluetooth or have an auxiliary input, ROAV Viva Pro will also make a connection to Alexa via your FM radio, iOS Carplay, or Android Auto, which is great if your car doesn’t support the other options. This is especially true of Carplay and Android Auto, which Alexa doesn’t support.

The device is not perfect, and it won’t work in all cars (see Amazon’s product page for details). However, it is a great and affordable option for taking Alexa on the road, especially if you are still waiting for your Echo Auto invite and want the capabilities now.

Roav Viva Pro Vs Roav Viva Standard

If you want a more affordable Roav Viva device and don’t need the FM transmitter or the auxiliary input check out the Roav Viva standard version [you can see it on Amazon here]. It also has an older processor and less sensitive mics but you may be able to save a few bucks if these things aren’t important to you.

Video Review: Roav Viva Pro

My thanks to John from Alabama for the helpful unboxing, review, and test drive. I am a big fan of Alexa Song Quiz as well (80s every time)!

Pros

  • Supports Bluetooth, USB, Aux cable, and FM radio transmission
  • Choice of Waze, Apple Maps, and Google Maps for turn-by-turn directions
  • Clear signal
  • Pretty responsive, despite having six fewer microphones than Echo Auto
  • Works great for supported music services

Cons

  • Does not work with all car models, such as the 2017 Acura ILX; Nissan Sentra and Altima cars from 2015, 2017 and 2018; and the 2016 Kia Souls [see list in FAQ below]
  • Degrades if cell service degrades
  • Can’t send text messages
  • FM radio option susceptible to interference
  • Some issues with phone call clarity depending on coverage area

Echo Auto from Amazon

 

echo auto vs roav viva pro

SEE IT AT AMAZON

Echo Auto is Amazon’s “order by invitation only” device that was designed specifically to put Alexa in your car.  While the invitation has been available for over a year, only limited quantities of the device have shipped to date. While I have used a friend’s device and loved it, I am still waiting for Amazon to send me my official notification that it is available for purchase after several months.

Relies on Your Smartphone [and Data Plan]

Echo Auto connects to the Alexa app on your smartphone and plays through your car speakers via Bluetooth or auxiliary input. It also includes a handy air vent mount. To see a list of cars that are compatibility with the air vent, click here. You can also use Velcro and mount it on your dash.

The Echo Auto was designed to that Alexa can hear you over road-noise, music, your AC or heat on max, etc.  It has EIGHT microphones and “far-field” technology so that Alexa will hear you over the Rolling Stones when you ask for directions to the nearest taco stand.

More Streaming Music Choices, Plus Audible and Podcasts

Echo Auto has more options that Roav Viva Pro for listening to music and you can also play Audible audiobooks and listen to podcasts. Music services include Amazon Music (shocker!), Apple Music, Spotify, SiriusXM, or radio stations from around the world with TuneIn and iHeartRadio.

🚗Related: Amazon Echo Auto Review: A First Look at Alexa in Your Car

Video Review

parristx provides a totally unbiased video review detailing his experience with Amazon Echo Auto. Appreciate the honesty man!

Pros

  • Everything Alexa – Make calls, set reminders, add items to your shopping and to-do lists, or manage your calendar.
  • You can set location-based routines – Alexa can automatically turn on the driveway and inside lights, adjust smart thermostats, and open smart locks when you arrive at home. Neat.
  • Turn-by-turn with popular supported apps like Waze, Google Maps, and Apple Maps.
  • Privacy by design. Hit the microphone off button to electronically disconnect the microphones.

Cons

  • Drop-in calling, a hugely popular Alexa feature, is not supported yet
  • Some customers have issues with getting Spotify to connect (while others have no issues whatsoever)
  • Not fully compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto yet [see list of makes/models/years].

Alexa Skills Comparison

Following is a side-by-side comparison of Echo Auto vs Roav Viva Alexa skills.

Echo Auto Roav Viva
Traffic Reports
Weather
News
Voice Phone Calls
Alexa Drop In
Control Smart Home
Stream Music
Audible Books
Online Shopping
To-Do List
Order Food
Play Games

Streaming Music Services Comparison

Echo Auto Roav Viva
Amazon Music
Apple Music
Pandora
Spotify *
iHeartRadio
Tunein
SiriusXM
Noise Cancellation

*Some customers report issues


Navigation Services Comparison

Echo Auto Roav Viva
Waze
Google Maps
Apple Maps

Connectivity Options Comparison

All three products require a cigarette lighter as a power source.

Echo Auto Roav Viva Pro Roav Viva 
Smartphone Bluetooth
Carplay
Android Auto
Auxilary Port
FM Transmission

What’s in the Box?

Echo Auto

echo auto vs roav viva

  • Echo Auto Device
  • Instruction Manual
  • Micro USB Cord
  • Audio Cable
  • Power Adapter [for Cigarette Lighter]
  • Mounting Pad

An optional Echo Auto AC Vent Mount is sold separately. It looks like this:


Roav Viva Pro

echo auto vs roav viva

  • Roav VIVA Pro Device
  • Manual
  • Quick Guide
  • Happy Card
  • Alexa Skills Cards


Frequently Asked Questions

Submit your own questions by leaving a comment below and I will publish the answers here.

Q: The reviews seem a bit mixed for all of these devices. Are they worth getting?

A: From everything I have read, I think your overall experience with these devices is going to depend on three things.  First, are foremost is the make, model, and year of your car. Both companies explicitly say the products will not work with some cars. I’ll list some of the trouble cars below.  The second thing is the type of technology that your car is using today. For example, if you have iOS Carplay in your car that rules out Echo Auto, but does not rule out Roav Viva. Some people don’t know or understand what technologies exist in their car. Some native Bluetooth implementations might cause conflicts that would present issues with these devices. The third thing is the skills you are using most.  Navigation seems to be flawless for most but some have reported issues with connectivity drops hosing the turn-by-turn directions mid-way through a trip. Having to pull-over and reconnect can be frustrating for sure.  So are these devices worth getting?  Heck ya! They are relatively cheap and useful as well as fun and you get to interact with Alexa in your car. Just don’t expect miracles yet.

Q: Does the Echo Auto require a functional cigarette lighter in order to work?

A: Yes, all three products require an in-car cigarette lighter as a power source.

Q: What models of Cars Have reported issues with Roav Viva?

A: From Amazon’s product page:

  • Acura: 2017 ILX.
  • Audi: 2010 A5.
  • BMW: 2014 325xi; 2012-2018 328 GT.
  • Cadillac: 2014 ATS Premium; 2014 CTS.
  • Chevrolet: 2010 Malibu LTZ.
  • Chrysler: 2008 Sebring; 2014 300.
  • Dodge: 2012 and 2018 Challenger.
  • Ford: 2004 Focus; 2010 Fusion; 2011 Mustang GT.
    Honda: All Accord models; 2005 and 2007 Civic; 2011 Crosstory; 2015 Fit; 2007 Odyssey.
  • Hyundai: 2011 Genesis Coupe; 2004 Tiburon.
  • Infiniti: 2005 G35; 2013 G37; 2010 G37 XS.
    Jaguar: 2017-2018 XE.
  • Kia: 2016 Soul.
  • Lexus: 2007 GS 350; 2015 RX 350; 2017 NX 200t; 2011 RX 350.
  • Mazda: 2014 CX-5; 2015 CX-5 Grand Touring; 2016 CX-9; 2009 and 2015 Mazda 6; 2008 RX-8.
  • Mercedes: 2012 C 250 Coupe; 2015 C 300; 2008 CLK 350; 2013 SL 550.
  • Nissan: 2015 Sentra, 2017-2018 Altima.
  • Pontiac: 2005 Grand Am.
  • Subaru: 2010 Impreza and 2016 Outback.
  • Toyota: 2006 Scion tC; 2007 4Runner; 2011 Sequoia; 2016 Corolla.
  • Volkswagen: 2013 CC; 2016 Golf GTI; 2013 Jetta; 2011 Tiguan.
  • Volvo: 2008 S80.

Q: What models of cars are not compatible with Echo Auto via a Bluetooth Connection?

A: Amazon maintains a page here: Cars not compatible with Echo Auto via Bluetooth. You can still use Echo Auto with these cars using the Auxillary cable if your car has an available jack.

Q: Does the Echo Auto require a functional cigarette lighter in order to work?

A: Yes, all three products require an in-car cigarette lighter as a power source.


Echo Auto vs Roav Viva Pro: What Do You Think?

So what do you think about my side-by-side comparison of the Amazon Echo Auto vs Roav Viva Pro vs Roav Viva?

Are you considering purchases one of these devices to bring Alexa to your car?

The technology is not perfect—YET.

But if you are a huge fan of Alexa like me, don’t you think it’s worth it to snatch up one of these devices now?

Please leave me a comment below and let me know your thoughts. Also, if you have experience with using any of these, I would love to hear your thoughts on this as well (the good and bad).  I read and publish all comments, and I’ll update this review as I hear more from you.

In the meantime, travel safely out there friends🚘!


Related Links

Amazon Echo Auto Review: A First Look at Alexa in Your Car

Echo Auto vs Echo Input vs Echo Dot: What’s the Difference?

What Are the Best Smart Outdoor Lights?

3 Best Alexa & Google Assistant Compatible Video Doorbells

How to Make Your Smart Lights Turn On When You Enter a Room


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About the Author

Echo Auto Vs Roav VivaTim Brennan, Technical Writer & Blogger

Tim Brennan is the founder of Writeinteractive, Inc., a technical writing consulting agency. He is a senior technical writer with over 20 years of experience writing for companies and organizations in and around Greater Boston, including GE and MIT.  In addition to actively writing for this smart home blog, Tim is also a regular contributor over at UniversalRemoteReviews.com.  Tim holds a BA in Journalism from Northeastern University.  There is a strong chance that he is developing a crush on Amazon Alexa. Brennan is a father to two sons, an active blogger, a Star Wars nut, and loves a good taco🌮.


About the Author

Coredy vs EufyTim Brennan, Technical Writer & Blogger

Tim Brennan [a.k.a. "Tec Timmy"] is a senior technical writer with over 20 years of experience writing for companies and organizations in and around Greater Boston, including GE and MIT.  In addition to actively writing for this smart home blog, Tim is also a regular contributor over at UniversalRemoteReviews.com.  Tim holds a BA in Journalism from Northeastern University.  There is a strong chance he is developing a crush on Amazon Alexa. Brennan is a father to two sons, an active blogger, a Star Wars nut, and loves a good taco🌮. You can learn more about Tim here.

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