Turns out the rumors were true: the Amazon Echo touch screen device is now available. It’s called the Echo Show and is available for preorder (with a June 28, 2017 release date) now for $229.99. Amazon has now solidified itself as the first brand to release a touch screen smart home assistant. Google and Apple will follow suit soon, no doubt with their own versions. Apple’s first generation digital smart home device will likely have a touch screen. Before we know it, the idea of a digital smart home device that doesn’t have a screen will be a crazy thought.
If you’re considering turning your home into an Amazon smart home, here’s what you need to know about the new Amazon device: Echo Show.
- All the things that you know and love about Alexa, the Echo brain, are included in the Show device.
- The Echo Show can, obviously, now show you things. Your news flash briefings can now be videos.
- You can access YouTube videos with just your voice and watch them on the Echo Show.
- If you are using Amazon music to play some tunes, you can view the lyrics while the songs play.
- If you’re using a connected security camera, you can ask Alexa to tap into the feed and display it on the screen. This includes your baby monitors and Ring doorbell.
- As with non-screen Echo devices, the Echo Show can control your smart house lights, thermostat, and other connected devices that are compatible.
- Your Echo device will never be dull again – you’ll be able to see your weather forecasts and to-do lists in living color.
With the release of the Echo Show, Amazon has also released a brand new feature: calling. The Echo Show will allow anyone that owns the device to video call their friends and family, hands-free.
The Amazon Echo calling feature isn’t just for video calls, though. It allows anyone with any Echo device or the Alexa app to make voice calls as well. The option to connect and communicate with other Echo users also includes messaging
Here’s the breakdown on the technical side for the Echo Show:
- The Echo Show features a touchscreen that is 7”
- The audio speakers are 2 inch Dolby stereo and offer balanced listening with rich bass.
- Echo Show can hear you from across the room and from any direction with its eight microphones. It also has beam-forming technology and noise cancellation so that it can hear the wake word and instructions even if music or a video is already playing on the device.
- There is a front facing 5mp camera on the device so that you can have video calls. The camera (and microphone) can be turned off.
- The Echo Show does work with a power adapter, so it is not a portable device. It will need to be stationary ad plugged into work. It comes with a power adapter and a 6-foot cable.