With today’s launch of the Amazon Echo Show, a handful of third-party skills have started taking full advantage of the device’s touchscreen. Ask Alexa for movie suggestions from Fandango, for instance, and you can scroll through a list of nearby theaters, tap on the movie you want to see, and buy tickets. Set up a restaurant reservation in OpenTable, and all the details will appear in text before you confirm. Other Echo Show-optimized skills include Uber, All Recipes, CapitalOne, Bloomberg, CNN, and Jeopardy.
Those visual cues and touch controls are a big part of the Echo Show’s appeal, but during our review period, they weren’t available to the thousands of third-party Alexa skills that developers have created. As more developers optimize their skills for touchscreens, the Echo Show will become much more useful, and Alexa will become a lot more practical on other devices like car dashboards and smartphones.