Alexa integration is lacking in both the Soundbar 500 and 700
I really love the sound of my Bose Soundbar 500 and 700, but I particularly do not like the Alexa integration. I have now been using these for a few months and I have come to the opinion that the Alexa integration is half baked. I am a very avid Alexa/Echo user with over 12 devices in my house dating back to the first gen Echo. Here are the issues I have with the Alexa integration.
1) The soundbars have amazing microphones! Great right? Well sort of. These soundbar lack the spatial awareness of other Echo devices including the $30 echo dot. I ask my daughters room alexa to 'Play Nursery Rhyme Parade' and the Soundbar 500 3 rooms down picks it up and starts playing the music even though I am 3 feet away from the dot in her room. I end up having to whisper to echos in different rooms so the Bose Soundbar doesnt hear. I have now resorted to updating the wake word for my echos from Alexa to Echo and trying to retrain my whole family to use the right wake word for different devices.
2) You cannot change the wake word on the Bose. It would be so much easier to just change the wake word on the Bose and not all other 10 devices. It would be even better if you could chose 'Bose' for the wake word. Best yet, I would like the opportunity to keep Alexa integration on, but disable the wake word on the Bose and use another Echo in the same room to do what I want like turn on the tv or play music through the Soundbar via the preferred speaker setting.
3) The response lag on these Soundbars is also annoying. If I say 'Alexa' it takes 2-3 seconds before the light comes on to know it is listening. This needs to be faster.
4) I cannot add these soundbars to an everywhere group for whole home audio. I know this is a known "issue", but I suspect Bose would rather you buy more of their products to create whole home audio so I doubt this gets enabled. It also may not be possible via Amazon.
5) If I ask Alexa to play music and then stop it to watch tv, the Bose is stuck on music setting and doesnt play the tv audio. I have to use the bose app to power on and off the soundbar to get it ti pick up tv audio again.
6) I cannot use my Soundbar to pair with myFire TV 4k stick to turn on the tv and control it via voice. I have to have a secondary Alexa device with the Echo keyword to do that. I should not have to have multiple echo devices to use voice control for the fire tv stick.
At this point, the only thing I use the Alexa for in my Bose soundbars is to play music via voice command and I have other Alexa devices with different wake words to do all the other heavy lifting that is possible via an Alexa device. I am not sure the utility of that is worth it. I may disable it completely and just use Amazon Music or Audible via my Fire Tv controlled by a fully functional Alexa device to listen to audio. Or just connect via bluetooth to my phone. Im sorry to sound annoyed and I hope some of these can be fixed via software updates.