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Review: The 2021 Echo Show 5 Is The Perfect Purchase To Have Alexa On Your Nightstand | CNN

2021-07-27T20:40:55.652Z

The second generation of the Echo Show 5 has good screen and sound characteristics, but the camera still has to do. | CNN Underscored in Spanish | CNN



The Echo Show 5 is Amazon's input device that won the hearts of users, so it's perhaps no surprise that the tech giant didn't do much by way of updates in this second edition.

In our several weeks of testing, the Show 5 delivered the same results across the board.

Now it has an improved 2 megapixel camera, although still below expectations.

It's a smart display with Alexa worthy of sitting on a nightstand.

The who, what and how

Who's this for:

At MX $ 1,999, the Echo Show 5 is an affordable and capable smart display ideal for a nightstand. It gives you full access to Alexa for on-the-go information, smart home control, and tons of entertainment options.

What you need to know:

Like all Echo devices, the Show 5 is deeply integrated into the Amazon ecosystem, providing Alexa functionality and seamless access to Amazon's library of movies, TV shows, and music.

In addition to keeping you entertained, you can use the device to control your smart home, such as watching a live feed from a Ring security camera or turning off the lights while you go to bed.

It also includes satisfying privacy controls for those who aren't 100% comfortable with a mic and video camera always on and attentive.

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How it compares:

Like Amazon's entry-level smart display, the Show 5 is less feature-packed than the $ 2,699 Echo Show 8 and $ 6,299 Echo Show 10.

Those devices have speakers that offer better sound and much better cameras. 

A smart little screen

If you've used any Echo device, here's an instantly recognizable design.

The Echo Show 5 looks like the original Echo Show or a miniature Show 8.

It maintains the triangular construction, which allows it to stand on its own and makes it easy to interact with the 5.5-inch screen.

Control buttons (volume up, volume down, microphone mute, and a camera shutter button) are activated at the top. Like the Show 8 or 10, turning the switch on the camera physically locks the lens and disconnects it. For those concerned about privacy, it's a useful feature and can add some peace of mind, especially since it's a visual reminder that the camera is off. The camera is 2 megapixels and looks a bit less blurry, but it still doesn't offer an engaging experience.

Our main caveat with the camera has to do with the overall build of the Show 5. The actual tilt of the Show 5 makes the touchscreen easy to use, but it also makes the camera point up.

It may only partially place you in the shot, which is not ideal.

Amazon did not choose to fix this in the 2021 model, so the solution remains to buy a base for the Show 5 to rest.

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The bottom of the Show 5 features a rubber grip that helps keep the device in place, especially when playing music, while the included 15-watt power adapter connects to the back of the device.

The star here is the 5.5-inch HD screen that works quite well.

With a resolution of 960 x 480, it can produce vibrant colors and offers a lot of detail.

Similar to the original incarnation of the Show 5 in 2019, the 2021 model stands out for its built-in clock modes.

Arguably the Show 5 is best placed on a nightstand where the built-in clock faces can show off their effects of color and depth.

You can say, "Alexa, customize my watch" to choose from a variety of faces in various categories.

These include playful, modern, classic, and personal photos.

It is an entertaining feature that allows you to give it your personality.

A better camera and a solid speaker

If you're looking for an Echo Show that's great for video calling, you can go for the Show 8 or the Rotary Show 10.

The Show 5 doesn't perform well in this area because its 2-megapixel camera lens doesn't always get the right lighting, it can deliver a blurry and pixelated image, and it tends to skew colors.

The Echo Show 5 houses a 4-watt speaker on the back that produces a fairly balanced sound.

You can listen to music from almost anywhere, including Amazon Music, Spotify, Apple Music, and many others.

You can also connect from an iPhone, Android, tablet, or computer to stream music via Bluetooth.

You can even pair the Echo Show 5 with other Echo or Bluetooth speakers for a multi-room experience.

In conclusion

For MX $ 1,999, the Echo Show 5 is a device for Alexa users who have a specific set of needs.

It's not that robust in terms of feature set compared to the Show 8 and Show 10. But we've been testing it on a nightstand and found that it really is a delicious connected alarm clock that costs less than those more premium models.

Amazon could have delivered a more important update here, but the brand is ultimately sticking with what works.

However, we wish there had been a more substantial upgrade to the camera.

Note: The above prices reflect the price at the time of publication of the article.

Source: cnnespanol

All news articles on 2021-07-27

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