The Echo Show 8 makes my home much smarter and is a step up from the previous model

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Echo Show 8

Maria Diaz/ZDNet

new Echo Show 8 It was recently released by Amazon and I have been able to test it for the past few months. coming from a The first generation Echo Show 8 Makes the upgrades to the third-generation model even more noticeable

Also: If Amazon wants me to buy the Echo Show 15, it needs to add this feature

In addition to featuring a sleeper design with edge-to-edge glass, a center-set camera, and a smaller speaker enclosure, the 2023 Echo Show 8 features spatial audio, a faster processor than the previous generation, and an upgraded smart home experience.

Echo Show 8

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Echo Show 8 (2023)

The third-generation Echo Show 8 is available now for $150 and features a vibrant, upgraded screen, improved speed and a faster processor.

Amazon’s updates are evident from the moment you unbox the device. Conspicuous by its absence of typical plastic packaging, the device is mostly wrapped in recyclable materials. Amazon says 99% of the wood-fiber material in the device’s packaging is made from “responsibly managed forests or recycled sources.”

Echo Show 8

Maria Diaz/ZDNet

Once unboxed, the Echo Show 8 stands out from the previous generation thanks to its different design, especially the rear speakers. The older generation had a tapered speaker that doubled as a stand to self-firm the Smart Display. The speaker on the latest Echo Show 8 also props up the display, but it has a new design that is, in my humble opinion, a choice.

The rear-facing speaker, let’s face it, looks a bit like a butt sticking out of the Smart Display, especially when viewed from an angle and a sliver of it is visible. This isn’t a negative thing, just the unfortunate impression the device gave me.

Echo Show 8

Maria Diaz/ZDNet

The suboptimal backside design choice is one of the many new features packed into the latest generation Echo Show 8. Amazon has finally chosen to place the device’s camera in the center of the display instead of on the right, as it has done on every Echo show before it.

Also: Amazon’s Echo Show 5 has made me a smart display believer (and my daughter too)

The upgraded 13MP camera is meant to be used for video calls, which makes the center placement even more useful to prevent people from looking sideways during video calls.

The right-to-center camera placement could better support Visual ID, making it possible for the Echo Show 8 to detect when a person approaches the device.

Echo Show 8 (3rd generation, 2023 release)

Maria Diaz/ZDNet

Visual ID personalization is available Echo Show 10, Echo show 15And Echo Show 8 is the second generation and new. This feature makes it easy for each person in a family to have a personalized experience with the smart display.

Also: This new tablet is redefining what a kids’ tablet can do

Each family member who wants to use Visual ID must enroll separately on each device, as Amazon explains that this Visual data is stored locally on the device. When one of the enrolled members approaches the Echo Show 8, it will display personalized content, such as sticky notes left for that person, calendars and their favorite news.

The Echo Show 8 (2023) switches from standby mode to a more interactive screen when a registered user is detected.

Maria Diaz/ZDNet

But Visual ID is separate from Adaptive Content, an entirely new feature that Amazon is debuting with this third-generation device. Adaptive content will make it easier for consumers to view content on the screen from a distance by simplifying it when no one is near the device and switching to a detailed view when the person approaches the Echo Show.

Also: 5 Things I Learned While Building My Smart Home

If the user is also enrolled in Visual ID, the content displayed will be personalized for that user. Adaptive content is coming to the second-generation Echo Show 8 and other Echo Show devices in early 2024.

Echo Show 8

Maria Diaz/ZDNet

The latest Echo Show 8 is also a smart speaker, complete with spatial audio. The device features two-inch neodymium speakers for a vivid directional feel and a surprisingly rich sound experience despite the speaker’s size, especially compared to first-generation models and 2023 Eco Show 5.

ZDNET’s buying advice

Echo Show 8

Maria Diaz/ZDNet

The new Echo Show 8 makes a compelling case for a smart display for both Alexa fans and smart home enthusiasts, but the $150 MSRP, higher than the previous generation, may be a deterrent (though that’s easily remedied with deals springing up later in the year). ) The second-generation Echo Show 8 retails for $130, though it’s often discounted.

Also: Everything you need to start building a smart home

This latest smart display, however, is significantly faster than previous models, both in terms of the screen’s touch response and how quickly Alexa responds and processes requests.

Echo Show 8 (3rd generation, 2023 release)

Maria Diaz/ZDNet

For smart home users, the Echo Show 8 can process common smart home requests locally for a 40% faster response when you ask Alexa to turn on a smart light or smart plug. new Echo Show 8 It’s not just a smart display with Alexa built-in, but a smart home hub like the Echo and the high-end Echo Show 10.

With support for Zigbee, Thread and Matter, the Echo Show 8 can be a central nexus to set up and control compatible smart devices and a smart assistant.





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