Amazon Echo Show 10 review: 5 things to know
The new Echo Show is a smart display that works for you.
The Amazon Echo Show 10 is Amazon's smartest smart display yet. It combines the audio power of its wide-ranging Echo line-up, with a 10-inch screen that follows you around the room, meaning that you no longer have to stay in one place while having a video conversation.
Having the moving screen means it has many guises: a security system, a kitchen companion, entertainment device and video conference hub.
We've been playing with the Amazon Echo Show 10 for a little while now - here are 5 things you need to know.
1. Make sure you have space for setup
The big Amazon Echo Show 10 USP is its motorised screen, which rotates and follows you around the room. Because of this, a chunk of the setup process is making sure that the device has enough room to swivel around. If there isn't enough room, then you will soon know about it as a warning appears. The calibration process for this is fun, though, and it will ask where you have put the thing, whether it's in the corner of a room on a breakfast bar etc.
All of this will determine how much tracking it needs to do. The rest of the setup is the same as any other Echo device, linking it to your Alexa account so it is compatible with any other smart things you might have in your house.
2. Design-wise, it's an Amazon mash-up
Amazon hasn't strayed far from its current device line-up when making the new Amazon Echo Show 10. It looks a bit like an Amazon Fire tablet connected to an Amazon Echo, although the design is a lot better than that sounds. As you can tell from the name, the screen is 10.1 inches, while the cylinder base is a decent size at 6.7 inches. Other design flourishes include the sizeable camera lens on the front and some physical buttons on the top of the device, as well as slider to cover the camera for privacy.
3. The screen is key
The 10.1-inch screen has a chunky bezel but it's brilliantly clear at 1280 x 800 pixels (incidentally, the camera is 13MP so you will be shown off in good quality to whoever you are speaking to). It can move 45 degrees on its axis, so you can have it flush to its base or raised a bit. You can't shift the screen to horizontal to vertical positions, though, which would have been a nice bonus. But the main thing here is that the device follows you, swivelling on the motorised base - it's silent when it moves and is a touch disconcerting at first but you soon get used to it. The moving screen makes the device a lot more desirable to use.
4. It likes to move it, move it
Depending on where you have situated the Amazon Echo Show 10, the device can rotate some 175 degrees in either direction. So even if you are rushing around getting all the ingredients you need for your dinner, the screen will be where you want it. Like the jokers we are, we tried to catch the motion sensor out a few times but it really does work and works well.
Amazon isn't the first to offer this type of feature (Facebook Portal also uses a similar technique, albeit digitally) but it is the slickest version of it we have seen. The only time it did stutter was when we were close to the screen and especially the lens - moving your hand near it, which you would do as it is a touchscreen, does confuse it and it may try and turn away from you like it's in a sulk but this didn't happen often.
5. It's a smarter smart hub
We found ourselves using the Amazon Echo Show 10 for myriad things, once we got used to it. The 10-inch screen means it's decent for watching Prime Movies and Netflix (no YouTube, unfortunately) and it worked well with our Ring devices, so you can see clearly who is at your door and ignore them. It's compatible with Zigbee devices, which means you don't need a separate hub for those. The audio on this thing was far better than we thought it would be, too. Load up Spotify or Amazon Music and there's a decent amount of bass thanks to the 5.3-inch woofer.
Final Verdict: Best in Show
The Amazon Echo Show 10 is a fantastic smart hub for the home. The motion tracking works well, is silent and really does make a difference if you are moving around a room a lot. While we tried it out in a few places, because of the tracking it worked best in the kitchen.
It does come at a price, though, at £239.99/$249.99 - which is double what the Echo Show 8 costs. It's a far superior bit of kit tech wise, though, and the rotating screen is a real game changer.