The tech item I'm most thankful for in 2015 [Alan]

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The year is winding down, but the tech world is winding up with Black Friday deals already appearing and CES heading our way in early January. As always a lot came out this year, and most people will have differing opinions on their favorite product, which is fine. To each his own. I'm just throwing in my two cents.

While I tested and reviewed many products during the course of this year, there was one that stood out. One that I use every single day. What is it?

It's Amazon Echo, and you've likely seen it advertised on TV. It's even better than the ads show, as it does much more than what can be crammed into 30 seconds.

I use it daily to check sports scores, weather, inquire about movies, play Pandora and Amazon Prime music while I work, podcasts from TuneIn and much more.

More importantly the feature set is growing all the time and there's a list of home automation integration. You'll find a full list of products in the Alexa app. Hubs include Wink, SmartThings and Insteon. A message at the top of the app will tell you what the latest additions are, and that's not just home automation, but everything being added.

$179 may sound like a lot for some, but the voice control is priceless. I can tell it to turn lights on/off from my couch, I can tell it to play Pandora, I can ask for NFL scores.

Is there a downside? Well Amazon knows everything you say, so if that worries you then I suppose it's a problem. I'm unfazed by that aspect. It ranks as the product I'm most grateful for on this day.

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