Yesterday Amazon introduced its next-generation Echo smart device, the Echo Show. This new smart home device includes a touchscreen which will allow users to make phone calls over the internet. Echo Show users can use the 7-inch touchscreen display on the device as another interface with Amazon’s AI assistant Alexa.

Amazon dominates the U.S. market for smart home devices with a 70.6% share according to PhoneArena. The only viable competition in the segment is from Google with their Google Home devices. Microsoft is planning to introduce its own device and is working with the audio company Harman Kardon on a device called the Invoke with Cortana on-board. There are rumours that Apple too is eyeing the market and should release its own version of the device with Siri in tow.

The new Amazon Echo Show will use the touchscreen display not only as a UI with Alexa but also show lyrics to songs being streamed over its speakers from Amazon’s Music service, YouTube videos, photos and help users create lists. The display will also allow users to monitor a door camera or a camera placed inside a baby’s room. Above this, the Echo show has a 5-megapixel camera, with the speakers placed at the bottom of the device. To make sure that the user can interact with the Echo Show seamlessly from all directions, the device has eight microphones to pick up voice with noise cancellation technology.

Due to the presence of the video camera, the Echo Show will also be able to make phone calls to other Alexa powered devices. This last feature set is also going to be patched into older Amazon Echo devices such as the original Echo and Echo Dot.

Amazon has put up the device for pre-order on their site for $299.99 (~₹19,400) with an expected shipping date of June 28th. You can order two of these smart speaker devices and shave off $100 of the total billed amount with the code SHOW2PACK. You can order the device from here.

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Abhay Masand
Rationalist. Idealist. Cynic. Human. PC enthusiast and gamer. Can be found reading books, listening to casts and babbling. Runs on dopamine. I do the news, sometimes.
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