Amazon launches Echo Show
Amazon has officially announced its new connected speaker product, the Amazon Echo Show. As had been previously tipped, the device forgoes the cylindrical form factor of its predecessor and instead is an intercom-like gadget featuring a touchscreen display.
It’s that display that sets the Echo Show apart from previous Echo units, allowing it to play YouTube videos, security cameras, shopping lists, photos, and more. It features a seven-inch diagonal, with a 5 MP camera above it and a speaker underneath, though the screen’s resolution hasn’t yet been outlined.
The Echo Show also integrates with Amazon Music to provide on-screen lyrics and it can stream audio from others services like of Pandora, Spotify, TuneIn, and iHeartRadio through its Dolby speakers.
As with the regular Amazon Echo, the Echo Show houses eight microphones, beam-forming technology and noise cancellation to help the unit pick up your voice no matter where you are.
Powered by Amazon’s Alexa digital assistant, the Echo Show will also allow you to make video calls between other Alexa-powered devices (including smartphones using the Alexa app). This includes a feature called ‘Drop-in’ which appears to offer a quick way to check in with others. Amazon says this will mostly be used for closest friends and family, allowing you to “check on an elderly relative, let the family know it’s time for dinner, or check on the baby in the nursery.”
As you might expect, the Echo Show is compatible with a range of smart appliances, too, from brands such as “Ring, WeMo, Philips Hue, SmartThings, ecobee, and Wink.”
“Alexa—the brain behind Echo Show—is built in the cloud, so she is always getting smarter,” states Amazon the Echo Show listing. “The more you use Echo Show, the more it adapts to your speech patterns, vocabulary, and personal preferences. And because Echo Show is always connected, updates are delivered automatically.”