We thought we were done with the smart speaker discount stories, but this one remains relevant due to the ongoing conflict between Amazon and Google. Amazon Echo Show is now being offered at it’s biggest discount yet, $80 off list price. Both Amazon.com and Best Buy are carrying Echo Show (i.e. Alexa with a screen) for only $149.99.
Why Does This Matter?
Echo Show is strategic for Amazon. Google doesn’t have a Google Assistant-powered household device that includes a screen. Amazon stands alone in the category. Google Assistant users on mobile can get access to images and video content so the company does have a multi-modal solution today. The current gap for Google is the in-home experience on a stationary screen. By contrast, Amazon doesn’t have a significant multi-modal (i.e. voice-plus-image-or-text) solution on mobile. That makes Echo Show even more important to Amazon.
It is clear that Google blocking YouTube access again last week is causing concern that Echo Show has lost some of its luster. Every good merchant knows that a steep discount can overcome a perceived loss of functionality. Immediately after the YouTube incident, Amazon started offering $150 off when purchasing two devices. The company probably exhausted the buyers that would buy two and now they are sweetening the deal for consumers willing to purchase one device.
Echo Show Has More Value, When More People Have It
The other key here is that the value of Echo Show rises as more people have them. Video calling is a key feature that has a lot of potential value, but only if many people have the devices. Remember when there were only two fax machines? The value was very limited until many businesses had them.
Echo Show also has the potential to add virality to device sales as people purchase for family members. This device is tailor made for holiday gifting and a 35% discount just might make it an appealing option for last minute shoppers. There are just two more shopping weeks until Christmas. Amazon is making a big push on all products to establish as many Alexa users as possible.