Amazon’s Next-Gen Echo Show Adds More Intelligence to the Smart Home
The evolution of smart home technologies—particularly from smart speakers to smart speakers with screens—is in hyperdrive. In 2015, Amazon introduced the Amazon* Echo smart speaker, the bestselling voice-first personal assistant that has already transformed millions of homes. Today, one in six Americans owns a smart speaker, up 128% from January 2017.1
Just three years later, Amazon is introducing the second generation of its Echo Show, which highlights the natural evolution to smart speakers with screens. The new Echo Show, powered by an Intel processor, is moving into the premium device category with emphasis on audio quality, a larger (10-inch) high definition screen (double the size of the original Show), a web browser, Skype support, and graphical improvements.
The Advantages of Show and Tell
Smart speakers with screens, like the Echo Show, further enrich daily life and provide a central audio-visual center for running a home. When powered by Intel Atom® processors, smart devices have the processing power and next-gen features necessary to drive premium customer experiences, including:
• Advanced home security: The seamless audio and video streaming on Intel®-powered smart speakers with screens enables consumers to monitor their home security systems, including motion detectors, surveillance cameras inside and outside the home, automated door locks, and other components of a safe home. The touchscreens make it easy to monitor activities and take immediate actions, such as turning lights on and off and adjusting cameras and other connected devices.
• Instant shopping. Smart speakers with screens encourage online shopping by making it a more streamlined, convenient experience. For instance, to buy a favorite item, consumers can simply hold up the item to the built-in camera on a smart speaker with screen and scan the UPC code. The device will then ask if they would like to add the item to their shopping cart or view similar items, speeding and simplifying the shopping experience.
• Hands-free lifestyle. Smart speakers with screens serve as hubs for quickly and easily managing a wide array of smart home devices, including not only security-related devices, but also TVs, garages, fans, sprinklers, and home energy devices such as thermostats. With Intel-powered devices, a single voice command can be used to turn down the temperature in the home, turn off the TV in another room, or even take a photo—no hands required.
Next-gen sales opportunities
As smart speakers with screens grow in popularity, manufacturers, developers and service providers will have a variety of business models to choose from to maximize revenue potential.
As we’ve seen with the mobile app stores, software written to take advantage of the unique capabilities of the hardware have the potential to drive demand for these kinds of devices. The Show-like devices also offer third-party revenue potential, not only for developers (things like in-skill purchase) but also for service providers with Alexa* skills that make use of the Bishop screen. For example, the JuiceBox skill for Alexa shows electric car owners how much charge they have, their status, and can even be set to notify owners if the car is not plugged in by a certain time.
The Amazon blog notes the “key role” of third-party developers, such as Jeopardy and CNN, “in bringing unique visual skills to customers that are not only rich and interactive, but voice-first at their core. In fact, customers have interacted with visually enhanced skills hundreds of millions of times.”
Developers that want to develop visual skills for Alexa can learn how at the Intel®-sponsored Amazon Dev Days. At these hands-on on workshops, developers will learn to create voice experiences and hear the latest on UI design and industry trends.
The Intel difference
Intel is driving the evolution of smart home devices like the Amazon Echo Show that are more perceptive, responsive, and autonomous. The Intel Atom® processor provides the processing power needed for barcode scanning, video calling, and hands-free photo taking. Intel-powered devices also enable the latest voice and touch features, facial and object recognition, and real-time data analytics.
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