As we have promised in our previous hands-on review of the Amazon Echo Show, we will now cover another new member of the Amazon Echo family dubbed the Echo Look. Now, the Echo Look is unique compared to other members of the Amazon Echo family, although the key difference is ‘only’ the inclusion of a smart Wi-Fi camera.
With the inclusion of the camera, of course, the key additional feature of the Echo Look is the ability to take pictures and videos. How can that be useful in the already powerful Alexa ecosystem? We will discuss that further below.
So, let us start this Echo Look review by discussing the notable differences over the other Echo products.
Amazon Echo Look: Unique Differences
The Amazon Echo Look can do almost everything the Echo, Echo Dot, and Echo Show can do. Newer Echo features such as setting reminders or making calls haven’t yet been integrated to the Echo Look (and Echo Show). However, we can expect Amazon to add those features to both the Echo Look and Echo Show shortly.
Of course, the touchscreen functionality of the Echo Show is absent on the Echo Look. So, let us answer the big question: what’s so unique about the Echo Look? As mentioned, it is the ability to take photos and videos, but it doesn’t stop there.
When you give a voice command like ‘Alexa, take a photo,’ the Echo look will do a countdown (3 beeps), and take a photo. The ring-shaped illumination around the camera will turn white with each beep, and you will also notice the 4 LEDs light up, that act as blitz. The Echo Look camera can do facial recognition, and can automatically filter the photo so that the background blurs (of course, customizable).
The Echo Look can take a maximum resolution of 4.5 megapixels, but it can automatically crop the image to show the subject it recognizes (you), so the image size can vary.
You can do the same to record a video, and the Echo Look can take 6-seconds long 720p video at 30 fps (frames per second). The video files are saved as MP4 (h264 encoding). The idea behind the video recording is that the Echo Look can take a 360 outfit video. You can simply spin around so the Echo Look can see all sides of your outfit.
This is the unique feature of the Echo Look, which allows you to do Style Check. The Style Check is a free service to compare two different outfits. The Echo Look will then do an algorithm-based judgment to determine which one looks best. The result came back in just within a minute, so it is unclear whether an actual fashion specialist is involved in making a judgment.
As you can see, the Echo Look is designated towards the fashion-conscious market, which is very big. Albeit it is a very simple feature, the Style Check can be a major game changer in the future.
So, let us discuss the fashion features a little deeper.
In-Depth Look at The Fashion-Related Features
Since the Amazon Echo Look is most likely placed in where you get dressed, privacy is, of course, a concern. To address this issue, the Echo Look won’t be able to display a live feed, or even take photos/videos when a device outside your Wi-Fi network attempts to run the Echo Look app.
On the other hand, if the mute/disable button on the Amazon Echo Look is enabled, your app won’t be able to trigger the camera at all. So, regarding privacy, Amazon did a pretty good job.
Now, let us move on to what the Style Check is all about. There are several sections on the Echo Look app: first, the HOME tab displays your newest photos or videos, and you can quickly pick the newest photo for a Style Check. The LOOKS tab is a gallery of all your videos and photos, organized by month and day. Of course, the standard functions like marking photos or videos as favorites are possible, and for that, there is the FAVORITES tab.
The smart thing about this feature is that you can see the weather forecast for the day any photos were taken. Those who love to write a journal can also make notes to describe the look of the photo, but the most powerful thing about the Amazon Echo is the ability to recommend fashion items that match your style. You can simply use the “Explore Similar Items” button on the photo detail page, powered by Amazon’s vast marketplace.
Currently, the Explore similar items function is still a bit wonky (remember that the Echo Look is still in a pre-release state), but we can see a bright future for this feature. Admittedly, it is also a smart move by Amazon to sell products on their marketplace, but it is a win-win situation.
Last but not least, there is the Style Check function to choose between two outfits. Remember those days when you just can’t decide which outfits to wear? The Amazon Echo Look is surprisingly handy at tackling that issue.
Pros & Cons
Let’s end the Amazon Echo Look review with a verdict. Here are what we liked and disliked from the Echo Look:
- Intelligent, fashion oriented features
- Retains all the features of the original Echo and all the Alexa skills
- Decent video/photo quality
- Very well-built, durable, and ergonomics
The additional features might seem too simple, especially considering the Echo Look is significantly more expensive than the original Echo (a little cheaper than the Echo Show). However, you will be surprised how the fashion-oriented features are very handy.
In our opinion, it is a good move for Amazon to be focused towards the very big fashion-conscious market, and they did a pretty good job with the Amazon Echo Look. For those who don’t want the fashion features, there’s always the Amazon Echo or Echo Dot.