What is Echo Show Good For?

Hi, this is Paul Verchinski.  I live in Columbia, MD.  We have a Village of about 200 members (ages 60 to 95) and have recently acquired 40 Shows thru a grant..  Unfortunatley, does not seem to be a lot of interest in using the Show, only 10 picked up..  We have a group that is trying to figure out how to motivate folks to want to get one (they are free) and use it to ameliorate isolation, etc.  I have a Show, an Echo, and a spot.  The Echo I have used a lot over the 2 years that I have owned it, mostly for music, news, weather, and timers.  The Show does all the same things and the difference is a screen. 

Would be interested in a discussion of the uses for the Show and what motivated folks to buy one.  I got mine for free and it has been sitting on my kitchen table, essentially unused.  Thoughts? Suggestions?

5 thoughts on “What is Echo Show Good For?”

  1. Hello Paul,

    Hello Paul,

    The most common use for an Echo Show in helping with isolation is video calling with friends and family. We have an article on that topic.

    Another everyday use is to display weather, news, and videos from sources such as Netflix, Prime Video, or YouTube on a screen right next to your easy chair.

    If a village member is interested in cooking, viewing recipes on a screen in the kitchen can help.

    For those members who are hard of hearing, an Echo Show can display large screen text for every response she makes under Settings- Accessibility- Alexa Captions

    If your members are getting deliveries, they can easily display a doorbell camera on their Echo Show.

    When listening to a song, a display of the lyrics is available.

    The Echo Show is also great for a rotating display of family pictures and or your favorite pictures. We are working on an article on how family members can post pictures on a loved one’s Echo Show

    My sister, brother, and I enjoy weekly Zoom video chats where we not only see each other but also share interesting YouTube videos and Google Map & StreetView exploring of childhood locations. We can see each other’s reactions, which is much better than just emailing a video or a screenshot of a map and waiting for comments

    Since you have an Echo Show, maybe you could try some of these things and demo them to other members.


      • Hello Ileana,

        Hello Ileana,

        Zoom only works on an Echo Show 8 at this time. Here is an article on setup and usage.

        It must be a scheduled meeting that shows up in your loved one's calendar.

        All that your loved one will need to do is to say, "Alexa, join the meeting". They need to say this AFTER the scheduled start time, for Alexa to join the meeting



  2. Hi Paul, I got my 89-year old

    Hi Paul, I got my 89-year old Dad a couple of Alexa Shows for Christmas. Getting technology is one thing, getting people to use it is quite another!  The things dad likes best are finding out the weather and asking Alexa to play music.  For this last one, he tries to stump her by asking for obscure songs from his childhood.  Sometimes he can only remember a few lyrics and he is amazed that she can still bring up the song.  He has just started using the hands free calling feature and he likes being able to call anyone on his contact list without getting out of his chair (or finding the phone!).

    I use the Drop In feature to video chat with him every day.  In the past I would call him and (assuming he could find the phone – do you sense a trend?), our conversations would last around 10-15 minutes.  With the video chat our conversations last half an hour or more and he loves showing me things.  

    my favorite feature on Alexa is the shopping lists.  I've just started getting my Dad used to putting things on the list as soon as he thinks of them.  He had a stroke a few years back and his handwriting is difficult (plus he can never find a pen or paper – do you sense a … oh… never mind!).  I have my phone set to work on his Alexa account so I can bring up his shopping list when I'm at the store.

    I think the Show is most useful if there are two or more people who have them so they can share video chats.  I've even done some tech support with Dad over the video chat.