Amazon Echo Show offers a necessary element to smart speakers

Ken Copeland
May 15, 2017

Amazon launched the new Amazon Echo Show today at a nominal price of $229.9, or so did Amazon think.

We've written about the new Alexa Calling feature added to the Amazon Echo, explaining how to set the service up and use it. It has the same exact features as any other tablet and even has the same functionalities.

According to the report, for the past few months, the new Amazon Echo's prototype has been undergoing testing by employees. "The call block feature will be available in the coming weeks", a spokesperson said.

Yet there are obvious limitations to devices that rely entirely on voice interfaces, which the Echo Show is meant to address. Instead of telling you about something, the Echo Show can show and tell you what you want to know.

Amazon Echo with touch screen costs $230.

It was only a matter of time until marketing firms found a way to monetise Amazon's Alexa-powered Echo speakers, and VoiceLabs - a self-styled "voice experience analytics" company - has become the first to do it. I can clearly see how Amazon may be able to use the Echo to totally disrupt everything from enterprise phone systems to how and when we communicate by voice.

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The issue of ads in digital assistants raises privacy concerns, but it is one of the main ways companies and developers are pursuing monetization in the space. Watch video flash briefings and YouTube, control smart home devices like lights and cameras, plus see music lyrics, photos, weather forecasts, to-do and shopping lists, and more.

But in case you're not looking to upgrade, you can use your Echo, Echo Dot, or Echo Show to call or message any contact who also has the free Alexa App or devices - which is still pretty dang cool.

Amazon Alexa could guide you not just through its voice, it's now even capable of showing you its real prowess. Although Apple didn't give any information on the new speaker, rumors suggest the company will announce the device at WWDC 2017 conference that will be held this June.

Rivals have scrambled to come up with their own smart-home devices that have voice controls at their core.

The Echo Show is available for pre-order now and will be shipping out to the USA on June 28.

The feature builds on Amazon's Chime video conferencing for businesses and is in step with Microsoft's Skype for Business and Cisco's WebEx.

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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