Amazon Echo Show 8 Review: Third Time is a Spell


“Not too big, but not too small, Amazon has an absolute gem with the Echo Show 8.”

  • Size is perfect for any room

  • Easy setup on the device

  • Strong audio performance

  • The YouTube integration is missing

If Goldilocks somehow stumbled into Amazon headquarters, she wouldn’t have an affinity for either the 10-inch Echo Show or the Echo Show 5. One is just too big, the other too small. You would probably prefer something in the middle. Something like the Amazon Echo Show 8 with its medium-sized 8-inch display. It might be just right.

Several new smart displays have been introduced over the last year that have stood out, like the Lenovo Smart Display 7, Google Nest Hub Max, and even the Amazon Echo Show 10 (3rd generation), but the Echo Show 8 intends to remain a standout competitor for Alexa-based smart displays, especially given the sales and package deals that Amazon is constantly offering.

Smart displays are without question a better and more future-proof investment. However, if you are thinking of solutions other than a smart display, consider the Amazon Echo Dot with clock as an entry-level offering or the Amazon Echo Studio as an audiophile.

The right size

Amazon has reached the perfect size with the Echo Show 8. It doesn’t look bad when placed on a table or desk, unlike the Echo Show 5, which looks quaint among other decorations. On the other hand, it doesn’t look massive when placed in tight spaces. Whether on the coffee table in the living room or next to your bed on a bedside table – the Echo Show 8 is the perfect size for almost any location.

On the subject of matching items

While its size is one of its great advantages, the design doesn’t differ from the previous iterations of Amazon. It features an angled display that is anchored to a fabric-wrapped base, giving the profile a more distinctive, speaker-like look. It’s not ugly, but Amazon could take inspiration from Google’s Nest Hub Max. Google’s design is friendlier, more accessible, and looks better in a home setting.

The volume controls and mute switch are located at the top of the Echo Show 8, while privacy appreciates the switch that instantly covers the 1-megapixel front camera. On the back there is a power connection, a micro USB port for maintenance work and a 3.5 mm additional port.

No smartphone required

Nobody wants to use a separate gadget to set up a new gadget. Fortunately, the entire set up process is limited to the Echo Show 8 and nothing more. After entering the password for my Wi-Fi network and then entering my Amazon account information, the setup process was complete. I never had to touch my phone. Most competitors require an app to be installed before setup is complete.

Voice commands are the main method of interacting with the Echo Show 8. The two microphones at the top of the display recognize the “Alexa” command, which works well in noisy conditions.

Alternatively, you can use the Alexa app on your phone to do most of the same actions with voice commands. Of course, you can also use the touchscreen display, an 8-inch panel with a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels.

It’s sharp and crisp, has the same resolution as its 10-inch sibling, but is smaller. That means more details. It’s an absolute delight on the surface, but nowhere is it as impressive as the ambient EQ technology that Google’s smart displays can use to achieve photo-realistic results.

Youtube what?

It takes some time to get to know the user interface, but after a few tries you will be familiar with the menu system and swipe gestures. Most of the idle time, the Echo Show 8 displays news and various content tailored to you.

Not surprisingly, all native services are provided by Amazon. Access to Prime Video for movies is just a tap away. In addition, it is a hub to access all connected smart home devices, provided that these have been set up via the Alexa app.

John Velasco / Digital Trends

The Amazon-centric approach has limits, however. Anyone who wants to play a quick YouTube clip for the kids will find the experience backwards. There is no YouTube app at all. Even if you tell Alexa to play a specific clip on YouTube, the Echo Show 8 will tell you that it cannot. You can play YouTube videos, but only by visiting the YouTube mobile website on the device.

This is the Echo Show 8’s biggest problem, but it plays well with other companies. You can access some of your favorite music streaming services like Apple Music. And keeping in touch with people has never been easier with a smart display. You can make video calls using your Amazon account or make old-fashioned calls using your cell phone number.

Sweet melodies

The audio performance of the Google Nest Hub didn’t blow me away. It felt thin and weak. So I was shocked by the powerful sound of the Echo Show 8. The smart display delivers large audio that easily beats the main competitors.

Not only does the bass perfectly emphasize the lows, but it’s also handy that you can adjust it and the highs to get that perfect sound. The Amazon Echo 8 beats its weight.

Check out these new features

Alexa is getting smarter and smarter thanks to frequent updates that expand her toolkit. While there are some basic features that you should definitely know about, every month there are new tricks that become available. Here’s a try on the Amazon Echo Dot with clock.

Wellness tips

Working from home has its challenges, especially when it comes to health and wellbeing. Alexa can help by providing some useful wellness tips. To hear them, just say, “Alexa, what’s my wellness tip of the day?”

Group conversation for all your devices

Getting someone’s attention in another room can be a challenge, especially if you have kids who routinely crank up the music in their rooms. You can now have group conversations using Alexa’s drop-in feature, which allows you to connect to other Echo devices. It is essentially similar to an intercom.

Keep your memories on all devices

Thanks to a new feature that plays them on all of your Alexa devices, you can always stay up to date with your reminders. To activate this, you need to select the Announcements option in the Alexa app under Settings> Reminders on all devices.

Daily music selection

Tired of playing the same playlist or carousel of songs on your Alexa device? Then check out the Daily Music Picker which has Amazon Music daily music recommendations. All you have to say is, “Alexa, play the daily music selection,” and a new artist will automatically pick a track, album or playlist.

Our opinion

If Goldilocks voted, she would likely go with the Echo Show 8. It’s the right size and the right price. At $ 100 (originally $ 130), this is still one of the best values ​​in a smart display right now. Due to its size, it is ideal for almost any place in the household.

Then there are the various sales and package deals for the Echo Show 8. For example, you can use a Smart plug, adjustable stand, or a Blink mini – without finding an inflated final price.

Is there a better alternative?

If you’re looking for something to be the focal point of your home, the larger 10-inch (2nd generation) Echo Show is a better choice. You pay $ 230 for basically the same smart display in a bigger package, however. If you want the newer model that is likely to hit the market soon, this is it Echo Show 10 (3rd generation)At $ 250, you’ll have to pay a little more.

Do you prefer the Google ecosystem? The Lenovo Smart Display 7 is the ideal candidate because it is similar in size, offers video calls and is perfect for controlling your smart home.

How long it will take?

Since it stays stationary, you can expect the Echo Show 8 to last a long time. Software updates will further improve the experience and bring new features, so this investment will get better over time. Amazon offers a one-year limited warranty with service in the event of a defect.

Should you buy it?

Yes. The Amazon Echo Show 8 is the right size and the right price.

Editor’s recommendations