Amazon’s Echo Show smart displays are finally getting a feature that Google’s Nest Hubs have had for several years: gesture control. As of today, December 13, you can now stop a timer by raising your hand with your palm facing the camera on an Echo Show 8 (second generation) or Echo Show 10 (third generation).
It’s a small addition, useful if you don’t want to yell or have your hands covered in food so you don’t want to tap the screen to stop the timer.
Hopefully it’s a prelude to some more gesture controls, like playing or pausing a song or video or snoozing an alarm. All of those gestures are available on the Nest Hub Max and the second-generation Nest Hub. The latter doesn’t even use a camera, relying instead on the Soli radar sensor to “see” your hand movements.
Alexa Gestures can be enabled through your Show 10 or 8’s device settings menu by selecting “Settings,” then “Device Options,” then “Gestures.”
In addition to the new Gestures feature, Amazon also announced another one new accessibility features for the Show: Consolidated Captions line, a quick way to enable three closed captioning features at once on all your Echo Show devices; Call Captioning, so you can see captions for Alexa calls in near real-time; Closed Captioning, which allows you to see the text of all audio content of videos on screen; and Alexa Captioning, so you can see captions for Alexa’s responses.
The company is also bringing text to speech to its smart displays. Part of the Tap to Alexa accessibility feature that lets you interact with the voice assistant using touch instead of speech. Text to speech allows you to type a sentence on the screen and have it spoken aloud by the assistant. This is designed to be helpful for people with speech disabilities or those who are nonverbal. The text-to-speech is also available on Fire tablets.
Janice has been with businesskinda for 5 years, writing copy for client websites, blog posts, EDMs and other mediums to engage readers and encourage action. By collaborating with clients, our SEO manager and the wider businesskinda team, Janice seeks to understand an audience before creating memorable, persuasive copy.