There’s another new feature called “Drop In” that lets you connect instantly with family or friends. “For example, you can drop in to let the family know it’s time for dinner, see the baby’s nursery, or check in with a close relative,” as Amazon describes it.
The screen lets you do a number of other things that are impossible on a regular Echo. You can watch YouTube videos and video flash briefings, check the weather visually, see music lyrics via Amazon Music, check shopping lists and more.
You can connect the Echo Show to cameras from Ring and Arlo, then ask Alexa to show you a room or area. The images will pop up directly on the screen, giving users perhaps the friendliest way ever to monitor their security cams. As before, it can also control thermostats and lights from the likes of WeMo, Philips Hue, Ecobee and others.
The Echo Show costs $230 in the US, or you can get two for $360, a $100 discount (there’s no official word yet on availability elsewhere). That’s a mere $30 more than the camera-equipped Echo Look, and almost certainly cheaper than any touchscreen tablet that may work with Google Assistant, Microsoft Cortana or Apple’s Siri. That’s assuming you can stand the style, of course, as many internet commenters hated it. Pre-orders start today, with shipping by June 28th in countries where it’s available.