Amazon introduces $90 “mini” Echo Show with HD and new privacy shutter
- Fast Company
Honey, Amazon shrunk its Echo Show smart display! The company announced a much smaller 5.5-inch display version of the device–just more than half the size of the original 10-inch screened version of
The new Echo Show 5 takes up much less real estate on the nightstand or countertop than the original Show. It fits more easily into the “alarm clock” motif than its predecessor.
But the new Show 5 has an HD display, and it’s still large enough and bright enough to display the important information and content.
The price of the device his shrunk, too. It’s $89.99, compared to the $229.99 Echo Show (second generation).
The rear portion of the original Show protrudes out to make room for a large speaker, and the sound of the device is impressive. The Show 5 shares the same design, but it’s smaller, so the speaker in the back is only 1.5-inches, and the sound, while respectable, sounds small and boxy by comparison. You can stream the major music services through the device, including Apple Music and Spotify.
Some new privacy features have made their way into the mini Show (and soon to all Echo devices). Most importantly, the Show 5 now gets a physical shutter to cover up the camera lens on the front of the device. (The older Show used a switch to electronically shut off the mic and camera.) There’s a new Alexa Privacy Hub screen where users can control what sounds and images the Show remembers or forgets. Another new feature lets users instruct the Show to “forget everything I said today.” Soon, Amazon will release another feature that lets users tell Alexa “forget what I just said.”
These things should make it somewhat easier to manage what Alexa knows and remembers about me, but they still leave most of the burden on me, the user. I still have to continually tell Alexa to forget my voice commands–day after day, week after week. As far as I know, there’s no voice command saying “Alexa don’t remember anything you see or hear in this house–ever.” And even with the new physical shutter, chances are that after about three weeks, the Show’s camera will watch unimpeded by default.