Amazon announces premium touchscreen $230 Echo Show, allowing Alexa to 'show you things'

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Comments

  • Reply 141 of 153
    krreagan2krreagan2 Posts: 71member
    If Apple wants to be competitive in this market, Siri has to be smarter.  Alexa understands about 65-70% of my request while Siri only 20-25%.
    My experience is opposite. Alexa is always thinking I asked her something when I'm in a general conversation with other people or the TV says something that she catches and she "playing classic rock - Johnny Cash", ummmm NO!. That is why I turned her off and she is now in my ever growing box of useless tech. It also felt creepy to have her listening to everything. I don't trust Amazon at all to behave in a civilized manor respecting my privacy. Apple, I do believe will treat my privacy better! (though not 100% better). Siri is much less likely to catch stuff that is not meant for her and think that it is. Only on rare occasions has this happened to me. Siri gets about 70-80% correct for me but that may just mean I have a more realistic view of what she actually can and cannot do so I don't ask her things that I know she can't do. Siri does need a giant leap though, I will agree. She has been more or less  stagnant for a couple of years, at least that is how it appears.

    How long before that screen shows ads when in idle mode?. My guess is Bezos  will use it to monetize as much as possible. So if you discuss something with your spouse, don't be freaked out when you see an ad for it the next time you glance at your Alexa device. Remember that _you_ are also a product! Amazon is going to sell or exploit you for it's own profit as much a it can get away with.
  • Reply 142 of 153
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,893member
    krreagan2 said:
    If Apple wants to be competitive in this market, Siri has to be smarter.  Alexa understands about 65-70% of my request while Siri only 20-25%.
    My experience is opposite. Alexa is always thinking I asked her something when I'm in a general conversation with other people or the TV says something that she catches and she "playing classic rock - Johnny Cash", ummmm NO!. That is why I turned her off and she is now in my ever growing box of useless tech. It also felt creepy to have her listening to everything. I don't trust Amazon at all to behave in a civilized manor respecting my privacy. Apple, I do believe will treat my privacy better! (though not 100% better). Siri is much less likely to catch stuff that is not meant for her and think that it is. Only on rare occasions has this happened to me. Siri gets about 70-80% correct for me but that may just mean I have a more realistic view of what she actually can and cannot do so I don't ask her things that I know she can't do. Siri does need a giant leap though, I will agree. She has been more or less  stagnant for a couple of years, at least that is how it appears.

    How long before that screen shows ads when in idle mode?. My guess is Bezos  will use it to monetize as much as possible. So if you discuss something with your spouse, don't be freaked out when you see an ad for it the next time you glance at your Alexa device. Remember that _you_ are also a product! Amazon is going to sell or exploit you for it's own profit as much a it can get away with.
    If you'd like to sell your unused Amazon "Alexa" hardware send me a PM.
    Soli
  • Reply 143 of 153
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,228moderator
    Soli said:
    Marvin said:
    tzeshan said:
    This is essentially a repackaged tablet.  Who will pay $230 on such a cheap tablet?
    Yeah, you can put an iPad on a stand and do the same thing and it looks better with a bigger display:
    How is that the same? The UI isn't designed to display information without ever being touched, and then you have the core HW not being nearly as useful in an iPad for a digital personal assistant. Put your iPad next to an Echo and try making a request across a room, then tell me which one has better mics. Now play music. Which one has better speakers? The comparison isn't even close.
    There can be docks that provide better mics/speakers but the benefit of the mobile devices is that they don't have to be across the room, you can take them anywhere. The Watch is right on your wrist all the time. What if you're in the bathroom, you're not going to shout all the way down the house to change songs or set reminders.

    Some commenters online have said they liked the idea of the Echo being fixed as it makes it better for video calling and more likely to replace a phone. I'd say the opposite, the camera isn't always going to be pointing the right way so you will either have to stop what you're doing and go over to the device and likely reposition it. The camera can't point at the floor to show what kids/babies or pets are up to, iOS devices can even switch back and front cameras during Facetime so you can film things outside in real-time like kids playing in the garden. Here's some caring grandparents concerned about their granddaughter outside, using an iPad on an improvised dock:



    That's the other thing about wired devices is that plugs are usually on the wall so it's hard to position the devices in the middle of the room without having cables that people can trip over. An iPad/iPhone/iPod can just sit anywhere. It's not that much of a hassle having to grab a device when a call comes in compared to moving over to a fixed device.

    I get the advantages of having products designed specifically for certain purposes but we moved away from those kind of fixed devices due to their limitations like being able to take calls/video when you are outside the house, even just in the garage.

    The speakers will be better for music than a mobile product but playing music out loud can annoy people living next door or other family members and people who do play music out loud regularly would be better off with a sound system. Say that a video call comes in from the mother-in-law and the Echo Show is where the TV is and the partner who is the in-law is watching the TV or maybe a baby is sleeping nearby. With an iOS device, the person who the call is for can pick it up and go into another room, the Echo device is stuck there.

    The UI is designed better for purely voice control, that would be something Apple would have to modify like they did for the Apple TV but Apple is already handling more of these scenarios on iOS. They were handling 15-20 million Facetime calls every day 3 years ago and Siri handles over 1 billion requests per week. The Echo isn't going to be some kind of revolution in video calling or voice assistance, it's just yet another product that does those things but now in a fixed location. Even if it does some of them better, you can see the video of the disabled person relying on Siri for everyday tasks:

    http://appleinsider.com/articles/17/05/09/apples-ios-10-siri-homekit-bring-accessibility-to-a-quadriplegic-mans-entire-home

    The iOS device goes everywhere with him and this shows that Siri can't be all that bad if he can dictate hundreds of messages every day with it.
  • Reply 144 of 153
    SoliSoli Posts: 9,176member
    Marvin said:
    Soli said:
    Marvin said:
    tzeshan said:
    This is essentially a repackaged tablet.  Who will pay $230 on such a cheap tablet?
    Yeah, you can put an iPad on a stand and do the same thing and it looks better with a bigger display:
    How is that the same? The UI isn't designed to display information without ever being touched, and then you have the core HW not being nearly as useful in an iPad for a digital personal assistant. Put your iPad next to an Echo and try making a request across a room, then tell me which one has better mics. Now play music. Which one has better speakers? The comparison isn't even close.
    There can be docks that provide better mics/speakers but the benefit of the mobile devices is that they don't have to be across the room, you can take them anywhere. The Watch is right on your wrist all the time. What if you're in the bathroom, you're not going to shout all the way down the house to change songs or set reminders.
    1) So your answer is that it's not good enough, but needs special HW.

    2) If you have a Watch then why even make a statement about using the iPad for a stationary Siri appliance? No, I don't need to shout across the kitchen to set or check on one of multiplier timers for cooking—Siri allows one, except on the Mac where it's zero.

    3) More importantly, what evidence is there that Apple would let you use an old iPad to than connect to special Dock that has far-field mics and a better speaker and call a new UI or app specifically so it can be an Echo competitor? I see no history that suggests that could happen.

    The UI is designed better for purely voice control, that would be something Apple would have to modify like they did for the Apple TV but Apple is already handling more of these scenarios on iOS.
    So your answer is that the iPad can't do it, but Apple could build new HW and SW to make it as good as the Echo. Do you know how ridiculous that sounds as an excuse for why the Echo sucks?
    edited May 2017
  • Reply 145 of 153
    sog35 said:
    NY1822 said:
    NY1822 said:
    Google and Facebook will be all over this...Ads, Ads, we must show more Ads. Such an innovator Bezos is....10 year old technology. What if Apple came to market with all the technology they have...take a glance at PatentlyApple.com
    I think you're ignoring the market potential here. It looks perfect for a system meant to keep kids, parents and grandparents connected.
    I agree there may be a market going forward as this should be the new norm....it was more on how the media is drooling over Bezos as an innovator today....Apple can't do what these other companies can do and release a product that sells 8-9 million in 3 years...
    hell the Apple watch will sell 50 million units in 3 years and it gets bashed left and right by the media

    the double standard is sickening.
    I own an Apple watch and really do not see many out in the wild. The loneliest person in the local Apple Store is the staffer assigned to demo the Apple Watch.
  • Reply 146 of 153
    zroger73zroger73 Posts: 718member
    So, Amazon demands my phone's contact list in order to use Echo calling/messaging.

    No, thank you!
  • Reply 147 of 153
    SoliSoli Posts: 9,176member
    zroger73 said:
    So, Amazon demands my phone's contact list in order to use Echo calling/messaging.

    No, thank you!
    Of course. How do you think Siri does it?
  • Reply 148 of 153
    crowleycrowley Posts: 5,982member
    Just passed a billboard for Google Home with a tag line something like:

    "In world with so many screens, how about a device with none"

    Seems a bit of an odd choice anyway, but especially now.
  • Reply 149 of 153
    AI_liasAI_lias Posts: 303member
    fallenjt said:
    This is very ugly ass piece of tech...seriously!
    If you did not think the iPhone 6 antenna lines were not ugly, this should not be ugly neither. It's your opinion, but think of the shape it would have if Apple made it. How would that look?
  • Reply 150 of 153
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,300member
    sog35 said:
    NY1822 said:
    NY1822 said:
    Google and Facebook will be all over this...Ads, Ads, we must show more Ads. Such an innovator Bezos is....10 year old technology. What if Apple came to market with all the technology they have...take a glance at PatentlyApple.com
    I think you're ignoring the market potential here. It looks perfect for a system meant to keep kids, parents and grandparents connected.
    I agree there may be a market going forward as this should be the new norm....it was more on how the media is drooling over Bezos as an innovator today....Apple can't do what these other companies can do and release a product that sells 8-9 million in 3 years...
    hell the Apple watch will sell 50 million units in 3 years and it gets bashed left and right by the media

    the double standard is sickening.
    I own an Apple watch and really do not see many out in the wild. The loneliest person in the local Apple Store is the staffer assigned to demo the Apple Watch.
    Which makes it even more incredible that Apple is now the 1st or 2nd biggest seller of high-end watches in the world.
  • Reply 151 of 153
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,228moderator
    The UI is designed better for purely voice control, that would be something Apple would have to modify like they did for the Apple TV but Apple is already handling more of these scenarios on iOS.
    So your answer is that the iPad can't do it, but Apple could build new HW and SW to make it as good as the Echo. Do you know how ridiculous that sounds as an excuse for why the Echo sucks?

    I didn't say the Echo sucked. If people already have an iPad/iPhone/Watch then it can already replace pretty much all the features the Echo Show has over the display-less Echo devices. If I do Facetime calls via the iPhone/iPad, being able to do video calling in a fixed location isn't better than that. The only advantage that the Echo devices have is the audio range, which is clearly very good:





    If iOS devices could pick up audio at that range, there would be no need for extra hardware, they are probably designed for close range to cut out background noise when mobile. The cheapest way to do that is some kind of dock with mic/speakers.

    Ming Chi Kuo suggested that Apple would be making an Echo competitor that would be cylindrical and cost around $179. Apple sells iPod Touches starting at $199 and Apple TV boxes at $149 so it sounds plausible. There is also a market for them given that Amazon has sold a few million in a year. Phil Schiller spoke about the benefit of having a display with an assistant and that's been used to suggest that Apple will make a standalone assistant with a display but that doesn't match with Kuo's cylinder suggestion and it sounds more like he's saying that the iOS devices that have the displays are more useful, especially when he talks about photography and social networking:

    "So there’s many moments where a voice assistant is really beneficial, but that doesn’t mean you’d never want a screen. So the idea of not having a screen, I don’t think suits many situations. For example if I’m looking for directions and I’m using Maps, Siri can tell me those directions by voice and that’s really convenient but it’s even better if I can see that map, and I can see what turns are coming up, and I can see where there is congestion, I understand better my route, and what I’m going to do.

    Or, for example, with photography, and one of the most popular reasons for our products is photography now, and photography requires a screen. So the idea of a device without a screen, well it’s not really useful for that whole category of photos that we all share. and all the social networking apps that are now embracing photos more and more, well, it doesn’t work really so great in voice-only assistants."

    http://gadgets.ndtv.com/apps/features/phil-schiller-upgrade-pricing-google-home-amazon-echo-swift-1690180

    There's a chart here listing the top uses of the Echo products:

    amazon echo uses chart
    http://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-echo-most-used-features-2016-10

    Looking at repeat usage, setting timers, controlling the home and music are the highest. An Echo Dot can do this for $49. None of the Echo products can work outside so its best to have a mix of low cost audio devices and mobile devices with displays.

    I could see Apple putting long range mics into the Apple TV to be able to set timers and control the home and music and it still technically has a display as it's connected to the TV. I think that would be enough.
    roundaboutnow
  • Reply 152 of 153
    SoliSoli Posts: 9,176member
    Marvin said:
    The UI is designed better for purely voice control, that would be something Apple would have to modify like they did for the Apple TV but Apple is already handling more of these scenarios on iOS.
    So your answer is that the iPad can't do it, but Apple could build new HW and SW to make it as good as the Echo. Do you know how ridiculous that sounds as an excuse for why the Echo sucks?
    Looking at repeat usage, setting timers, controlling the home and music are the highest. An Echo Dot can do this for $49.
    Where is this disconnect coming from? You really believe there's nothing in the full sized Echo that offers a benefit over the $Echo Dot? I don't know what the cost difference is, but I am certain that if Echo Dot was the first Echo I bought I probably wouldn't have purchased a full-sized Echo. It's because the Echo had such an amazing array of mics and solid speakers that I bought the Echo Dot for the quiter bedroom, but it needs that environment because it's I/O isn't nearly as good as the Echo.

    Phil Schiller spoke about the benefit of having a display with an assistant and that's been used to suggest that Apple will make a standalone assistant with a display but that doesn't match with Kuo's cylinder suggestion and it sounds more like he's saying that the iOS devices that have the displays are more useful, especially when he talks about photography and social networking:
    That sounds like the Echo Show. A home-based digital personal assistant can absolutely have a display, but Schiller spoke of a device that seemed to require a display. Even  Amazon has stated that the Echo Show's primary UI are the microphones and speakers. The display is an auxiliary feature, not unlike how Siri is an auxiliary feature to the main touch screen of iDevices.
    edited May 2017
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