The Amazon voice assistant takes the best of Echo Show and presents it in a smaller body and at a better price.
Shortly after launching Echo Show, the first voice assistant that could be considered to have a screen. Amazon introduced Echo Show 5, a virtually identical version, but which reduces the size ( 5.5 inches) and price $89.99, and it might be just what I needed to be useful.
Let’s start from a base: the screen in one of these voice assistants walks a thin and curved line that goes between the redundant and the superfluous, with small deviations of utility. Or, what is the same, it is rarely necessary and can be uncomfortable.
In the case of Echo Show 5, this problem is solved because the 5.5-inch screen is not much larger than that of an alarm clock. This makes it perfect for any room that has such a timer, such as a bedroom. Anyway, it also takes place in the living room, since the screen will rarely be used as such.
For power, it could, yes: play Amazon Prime or Vevo content, in addition to displaying the lyrics of Amazon Music songs (using Spotify only shows the album). It is also possible to display images or make video calls, but all these are things that make the phone. The tablet or the TV itself just as good and with a higher quality screen.
Where it looks – or, well, roars – is in the sound section. Although it barely occupies space, it can fill a room with its sound. The speaker also achieves it with enough quality. It may not be for a party, but an informal meeting and, of course, for a day. In any case, it has a jack with which it is possible to connect it to a more powerful device.
Apart from the size, the main novelty of Echo Show 5 is that it has a physical button that serves to temporarily disable the camera in the easiest way in the world: with a lid. Technically this system is just as impassable as the previous one, which closed the eyes electronically to the device, but it is undeniable that the feeling of security is much higher in this case.
Also, there are other buttons to turn off the microphone – they are separated so that Alexa can ‘hear’ us without ‘seeing us’ – and to increase and decrease the volume. We also found a micro-USB port to power the assistant. Although Amazon provides another power cable, the presence of this entrance makes it much easier to transport the Echo Show, either for a trip or to change it.
This, precisely, is another key to the new Show. While the previous one was difficult to locate – its screen and the possibility of showing video recipes made it possible to inhabit the kitchen. Its size complicated it – the new assistant can find his place in practically any room.
In the bedroom, for example, it is a perfect replacement for the alarm clock and can fulfill that function. Amazon has also incorporated a gradual wake-up mode in which the screen lights up more and more; a solution that may not work for everyone, but will be appreciated by those who can’t stand the shock of traditional alarms.
The rest of possible accommodations depends on the use that will be made of Show 5 and here really who takes center stage is Alexa: he can do a lot, but perhaps in no case is enough. Of course, in the worst case is a speaker set to control the music with busy hands.
Therefore, it is possible that Echo Show 5 is the best assistant of Amazon at the moment since it combines an attractive price, powerful speaker, discreet size and the screen that, although it is not necessary, does not bother either. Also, giving peace of mind – even if minimal – to those who care about privacy, will always be an advantage. The only question is whether these advantages, together with the virtual assistant, will be enough to convince those who are not comfortable with a microphone and a camera at home.