Amazon’s annual product event introduced a host of new hardware and service updates, including a markedly different Echo Show design. But for those of us who prefer background noise while we’re whipping something up in the kitchen, the revamped Echo Show also introduces a new streaming option: Netflix.
The Echo Show 10, a $250 smart display that completely overhauled the Show’s previous design, will soon support streaming all of Netflix’s considerable library with Alexa commands. Currently, Hulu and Prime Video (of course) are also supported on the Echo Show, but a spokesperson told Gizmodo that the company didn’t have any additional plans to share about other services arriving on the device. Specifically, it’s probably safe to assume we won’t be hearing about Disney+ support anytime soon.
Like smart TVs, that’s where some smart home hubs differ. Disney+, for example, is supported on the Nest Hub and Nest Hub Max, as are Netflix, Hulu, CBS All Access, Sling TV, and Starz, among a number of other services as well. Facebook’s Portal, meanwhile, is also an Alexa-enabled device and supports CBS All Access, Sling, Starz, Showtime, Prime Video, and Facebook Watch, as well as ABC News Live. If streaming is important to you in a space where you plan to keep your smart display, supported services are something to consider. (Though how your connected devices communicate with each other is also something to keep in mind, and that’s sometimes made easier within a given product ecosystem.)
One thing that the Echo show has going for it is that its screen moves with you as you’re making your way around the kitchen. That may be less important for someone who sticks their display in a centrally-facing corner in a smaller space, but it’s not a terrible idea if you need a truly hands-free experience and have, say, a kitchen island.
Now, why the heck would anyone want a streaming service on a device in their kitchen, anyway? Maybe you’re a parent with small children you need to keep an eye on but either aren’t interested in shelling out for a TV for your kitchen or simply do not have room. Maybe, like me, you just prefer to have background noise on—a show to watch while you’re making dinner or doing dishes. (Yes, I am aware that podcasts and music also exist.)
Whatever the reason, at least you’ll have access to Stranger Things.