This photo provided by Amazon shows models of the Amazon Echo Show. Amazon is giving its voice-enabled Echo speaker a touch screen and video-calling capabilities as it competes with Google's efforts at bringing "smarts" to the home. The new device, called Echo Show, goes on sale on June 28, 2017. Amazon says it's also bringing calling and messaging features to its existing Echo and Echo Dot devices and the Alexa app for phones. (Amazon via AP)
Wired Magazine called the device and its abilities “stupendously powerful” and lauded the touchscreen feature that now complements Alexa’s voice control.
“A screen in the Echo universe means there’s almost nothing you and Alexa can’t do,” Wired’s David Pierce wrote.
But The Verge noted some of the device’s limitations, including a “slightly unsettling” feature in Drop In, the voice-call feature. Drop In allows users to white-list individual contacts who will be able to pop up and start a video chat on your Echo Show unannounced.
“I personally cannot imagine ever letting my friends have this power, but maybe that’s just me.” tech critic The Verge’s Chaim Gartenberg said.
Other limitations include Amazon’s single-user system, which would give anyone in the house access to things like to-do lists and would set off all your devices if someone calls you via Drop In.
In addition, because the device is built to run Echo skills and not apps, users won’t be able to run Amazon’s own Fire OS apps, or anything from the Google Play Store, Gartenberg said.