Amazon has announced a new 2nd-generation Echo Show 8. Unlike the new Echo Show 5, which was also announced today with minor updates, the new Echo Show 8 is a much more significant upgrade when compared to the older model. A much more powerful processor in the new model should make it feel snappier and a major update to the camera now allows for automatic pan and zoom during video calls.
Under the hood of the new Echo Show 8 is now a MediaTek MT 8183 octa-core processor which is a major upgrade from the MediaTek MT 8163 quad-core chip in the previous model. Various benchmarks put the new chip at over twice the performance of the old, so interacting with the Echo Show 8 and pulling up info should be faster.
The other big upgrade in the new model is a 13-megapixel wide-angle camera which should be a night and day difference over the old model’s 1-megapixel camera. The extra resolution now allows the camera to automatically pan and zoom while you’re on a video call to keep you centered as you move around. Unlike the Echo Show 10, which physically moves to track you during calls, the Echo Show 8 does this all digitally, so the image quality will likely deteriorate slightly if you move too far away from center, but it’s surely far better than a static image, like with the Echo Show 5. Like with all Echo Show models, the new Echo Show 8 comes with a physical shutter to cover the camera for extra privacy.
Most other aspects remain the same between the new and the old Echo Show 8. There is still an 8-inch touch screen, four microphones, a pair of 2-inch speakers for stereo sound, a passive bass radiator, and 802.11a/b/g/n/ac WiFi. Just like with the new Echo Show 5, Amazon has decided to remove the 3.5 mm audio out port on the new Echo Show 8, which was available on the outgoing model.
The new Echo Show is $129.99, the same price as the old model, and is available in Charcoal Black or Glacier White. For an additional $10, you can get it bundled with a Blink Mini security camera, which saves you $25 over buying them seperately. There is also a new adjustable stand for the Echo Show 8 that costs $24.99, but there is no discount if you buy it bundled. Pre-orders for the new Echo Show 8 start today and it will ship on June 9, 2021.