Exploring the Pros and Cons of Amazon Echo Hub: A Detailed Review

Pros and Cons


  • + Clear, customizable interface
  • + Great for Ring customers
  • + Intuitive controls
  • + Built-in smart home hub


  • - Mediocre speakers
  • - Chunky body

Managing many smart home gadgets can be a huge hassle, as anybody who has more than a few can attest. The goal of Amazon's Echo Hub, the ultimate command center for your Alexa-enabled home, is to simplify your controls. You can easily view the status of your connected devices, live security camera feeds, and real-time widgets at a glance by mounting or standing its brilliant 8-inch screen. It works as promised, and I've been using it for the past week to manage dozens of the greatest smart home appliances I've put all over my house.

So where does the Echo Hub come in, given that the Echo Show 8 offers exceptional value and the Echo Show 15 offers a huge shared family hub experience? How much better is the experience of managing a smart home? Here are its results and a ranking of the top smart screens that we have examined.

Amazon Echo Hub Specifications

7.9 x 5.4 x 0.6 inches
12.9 ounces
8” touchscreen (1280 x 800)
Passive infrared (PIR) sensor for proximity detection, ambient light sensor (ALS)
Bluetooth and dual-band Wi-Fi, 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi networks
Smart Home Device Compatibility:
Wi-Fi, Bluetooth Low Energy Mesh, Zigbee, Thread, and Matter
Dual speakers w/ stereo playback
MediaTek MT 8169 A


There is only one color option available for the Amazon Echo Hub, Glacier White, and it costs $179.99 on Amazon.


(Image credit: Future)

The 0.6-inch thick body of the Echo Hub is about the size of two Google Pixel Tabs squeezed together. Its all-white shell, which has a sleek glass finish atop the touchscreen display, feels and looks great.

This display automatically switches from a screen with a clock and photo display (chosen from curated backdrops or own photographs) to a smart home control panel when someone approaches thanks to a proximity sensor on top that employs infrared technology. Despite being somewhat smaller, the 8-inch screen is crisp enough to see images, the weather, and the clock from across the room.

An supplied 6-foot USB-C cable fits into the one connector on the rear to power the display. You can attach the Hub to your wall neatly so that it seems like an alarm panel or smart thermostat thanks to a large cut-out with clips on the back for wrapping the extra wire length around.Nevertheless, if you think you'll be moving the Echo Hub around your house, you may buy a stand separately.

(Image credit: Future)

Physical buttons, which are fairly typical for an Echo device, are arranged along the right side and feature volume up, down, and a mute option for the four microphone array. Two stereo speakers project sound out of the top of the Hub. You don't get much bass with this gadget, but it still sounds rather clear even at high levels. It's evident from Amazon's emphasis on the "Active Media" tab that this is not a media-first device. Instead, it encourages you to share your sound with your favorite linked Alexa smart speaker or your whole-home audio group.


(Image credit: Future)

Your Echo Hub will want to connect to Wi-Fi when you plug it in so you can log into your Amazon account. This will synchronize your current room groups and Alexa smart home devices with the Hub. Once configured, the Echo Hub differs significantly from the media-focused Echo Shows. The primary interface of the Echo Hub is a straightforward, well designed smart home dashboard with panels and shortcuts that arranges your rooms and routines in a list on the left side. The panels and live widget titles are easily navigable with a tap. The widget collection comes with a device favorites page, a grouping of devices for the area where the Echo Hub is situated, and a multi-camera live view by default. This gave me easy access to the gadgets I use most frequently, such the Switchbot I use to get my garage door opener to open early in the morning for my truck.

This bar runs down the bottom of the screen, so device categories are always visible. In this manner, you may easily access your smart locks, lights, outlets, and more. You may rearrange the order in which your rooms are presented, reposition widgets on the screen, and utilize the Amazon Widget Gallery to include items such as your to-do list in the view. Since everything is so well-organized, adding a widget for recent deliveries or music suggestions won't overwhelm you as it does on Echo Show and will instead put your smart devices front and center.

Additionally, the Echo Hub has a built-in smart home hub. It is practically globally compatible with a large array of current smart home devices and more to come because it supports Bluetooth, Matter, Thread, and Zigbee.

My older Zigbee smart plugs and lock worked well, and the mesh protocol is a wonderful feature as it allows you to control items locally even in the event of an online outage. The way it simplifies connecting a new gadget is something I thought was very great.I only needed to say "Alexa discover my devices" to see everything from a Sengled smart light to a collection of the greatest smart plugs appear on the screen and be instantly added with a press.

Review of the Amazon Echo Hub: Performance

(Image credit: Future)

The Echo Hub easily became a part of my daily routine throughout the course of the week. I mostly used it as an intercom to check in on my younger sisters while I was cooking by using my other Echo smart speakers. With my Ring Video Doorbell Pro, I was able to see who was at the door while I was typing at my dining room table and receive precise item delivery timings. Even something as basic as turning down my smart thermostat seemed seamless since there were animated buttons in plain sight rather than requiring me to ask or make an awkward leap to get to them. In addition, I enhanced the functionality by gaining access to Amazon's widget gallery and used the Sticky Notes software to create screen-based reminders.

Widgets are compressed into buttons that you must tap on to expand on other Echo Shows that are the same size as the Hub. Because live widgets are the main reason I enjoy the Echo Show 15, I was happy to see Amazon making the most of the screen. They make using a smart home effortless by keeping many applications open at the same time. This allows me to quickly alter light colors, modify the brightness of the light, and set my smart thermostat without having to navigate through menus. When I enter these commands, there is no noticeable lag, and the Hub nearly has the sense of a hardwired switch that is connected to the smart thermostat or the lightbulbs directly.

With its speedy new MediaTek CPU, you can ask Alexa queries like what time it is or the weather, and you'll get a prompt response. This also holds true for how quickly the assistant does tasks; for example, Alexa responds to requests by turning on the lights in less than a second. Even strenuous tasks, such as switching between many real-time Ring camera streams, seemed silky smooth and had excellent clarity at close range.


(Image credit: Future)

For any Alexa smart home, this Echo control panel is well worth the investment. It's also a fantastic option for anyone looking for an Alexa-enabled smart display that has the live widgets of the large Echo Show 15 without the bulk. With its intuitive and highly configurable interface, you can easily manage every part of your smart home. Its flexible home hub connectivity allows it to easily connect to thousands of devices.

This might not be the ideal smart display for you if you don't have security cameras installed around your house or if you're more concerned with media playing. But the live widgets, the simplicity of starting routines, and the instant access to gadgets make my smart home management so much easier that I want two more Hubs—one for my kitchen and one for my bedroom—for constant use. If Amazon allowed you to link it to a speaker system like the Google Pixel tablet or install it between wall panels in rooms, this may be much more awesome. Even so, this initial version is quite enjoyable to use and is undoubtedly one of the most innovative smart home appliances of the year.

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