Expanding its smart speaker portfolio in India, Amazon has announced the launch of Echo Show in the country. Priced at Rs 22,999, the Echo Show is the most premium offering in the Echo family of products. Powered by Alexa, it features a 10-inch HD display along with a 5MP camera and built-in smart hub. Echo Show joins the existing family of Echo Input, Dot, Echo, Spot and Plus.
"Customers across the country have purchased Echo devices and started their voice-first journey with Alexa. Today, we're making this voice-first experience better by introducing Echo Show which provides an enhanced audio-visual experience," said Parag Gupta, Head of Amazon Devices India. "The large screen size will increase utility and make it even easier to ask Alexa to show you things, no matter where you are in the room. And the room filling sound will make watching a music video, catching up on your favourite shows or listening to your favourite playlist more enjoyable."
The Echo Show has a fabric design and comes with a 10-inch HD display and can be used to view movie trailers, video news bulletins, get weather updates, pull up the shopping list, and watch TV shows and movies from Amazon Prime Video, or Facebook photos, and more. Amazon claims that Alexa skills are optimized for the screen can help users request a ride from Ola, recipes from Sanjeev Kapoor, horoscope from Ganeshaspeaks, wisdom from Sadhguru, news briefing from Aaj Tak, cricket update from ESPN Cricinfo, to name a few.
The Echo Show houses an eight-microphone array and 'far-field' technology to differentiate voice from ambient sound. It also features dual, side-firing 2inch Neodymium drivers, a passive bass radiator, and Dolby processing to deliver expansive sound. Users will be able to access music using Amazon Prime Music, Saavn, Hungama Music, Gaana or TuneIn, and adjust treble, mid, and bass levels using voice commands. It can also be used to set up multi-room music to play music across compatible Echo devices throughout the home.
The Echo Show has Zigbee smart home hub built-in for connecting smart home appliances. Just by saying, "Alexa, discover my devices", the smart speaker will automatically discover and setup compatible light bulbs and plugs without the need for additional hubs or apps. Alexa-compatible cameras can be used to view the live feed from a camera location. Alexa Routines is a simple way to complete multiple tasks, from controlling smart home devices to playing music and getting news information, with a single voice command.
Amazon claims the Echo Show as a great hands-free calling device as it can be used for video calls between family and friends who have an Echo Spot, Echo Show or the Alexa app. For this, the hardware has a 5-MP camera built-in that supports high-definition video calls. Users can also use Skype voice for video calling. Just say, "Alexa, call mom" or "Alexa, call Vijay on Skype". The Drop-In feature on supported Echo devices allows users to instantly speak with family or check in on the kids' room and join their playtime while still at the office.
For web browsing, it comes with Silk and Firefox browser onboard, which can be launched with a voice command. Users will be able to use the on-screen keyboard on these browsers to type a URL, search and watch web videos, and visit the favourite website. Like other browsers, users can bookmark their favourite websites for easy access.
Accessibility features include enabling Alexa captioning, magnify the screen, toggle colour inversion, and choose between colour correction options on Echo devices with screens. Users will be able to enable the VoiceView screen reader to use gestures to navigate the screen and hear spoken feedback about the items selected. Other accessibility feature includes Tap to Alexa that makes Alexa available to customers who are not able to interact with Alexa via voice, such as customers with speech impairments.
Available starting today, Amazon has come up quite a few launch offers. On the purchase of Echo Show, consumers will get a Philips Hue bulb at no additional cost. Consumers can get a flat Rs 2,000 cash back on the purchase via Citibank debit and credit cards. There are no-cost EMI offers across leading banks, facilitating consumers to purchase Echo Show for as low as Rs 1917 per month.
However, customers do not get a complimentary Prime membership with the device.