What looks and acts like a TV is now a real TV. As part of the new software update, Echo Show 15 now supports Amazon Fire TV, allowing you to watch your favorite shows from various streaming services.
Platforms like YouTube, Disney Plus, and Paramount Plus have a new home in the Show 15 interface. If you don’t mind the smudging of the 15.6-inch Full HD display, you can use the newly developed virtual remote to navigate the menus. This is especially useful as not all video apps support touch. However, if you plan to use or already have a display in your kitchen (Amazon already knows it does (opens in a new tab)), works with the 3rd generation Alexa Voice Remote so you can protect it from smudging. Or you can use the Fire TV app; everything is the same.
In addition to Fire TV support, the Echo Show 15’s audio receives an upgrade, adopting Echo Studio’s “custom surround sound processing technology”. That’s not to say the Show 15 picks up surround sound on its own, as the display probably isn’t capable of that. Still, any improvement is worthwhile if it means more immersive sound. The audio performance of the device, including weak bass, is one of its biggest drawbacks.
None of the smart home functions are cut in any way. You can still use the original Echo Show 15 smart home features, such as controlling other devices or tracking packages.
A look into the future
The interesting thing about Echo Show 15 is that in September Amazon revealed this over 70 percent of device owners (opens in a new tab) use it to watch anything other than Prime Video. With that in mind, it could be argued that Amazon has given the display a more balanced purpose during difficult financial times for the company.
In case you’re not aware, Amazon’s Worldwide Digital unit, which is part of the company that powers Alexa and Echo devices, is on track to lose $10 billion, according to Business Insider report (opens in a new tab). Apparently the devices are not selling well enough. They are popular with their audience, but too few consumers are interested outside of this core group.
These trials don’t mean Alexa or Echo hubs will stop working overnight. Far away from here. If anything, we can see Amazon doing its best to ensure that these devices continue to receive support or potentially new buyers. More people can pick up the Echo Show 15 due to Fire TV support. Either way, it will be interesting to see what the future holds for Alexa and the devices that support it.
If you’re interested in the Echo, be sure to check it out The latest TechRadar collection with the cheapest Amazon Echo deals for the month of December.