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(Pocket-lint) - Amazon updated its Echo Show 5 in 2021 with a couple of new features.

There aren't huge differences between the new Echo Show 5 and the older Echo Show 5, but if you're wondering which to buy, you've come to the right place. If you're looking at whether to buy the Echo Show 5, Show 8 or Show 10, then head to our separate feature

The best prices for Echo Show are available during events like Prime Day or Black Friday, but there are often deals throughout the year.

Keep reading here if you want to know how the new Echo Show 5 (2021) differs from the old Echo Show 5 (2019). 

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What's the same?

  • Design and controls
  • Features
  • Speaker hardware

To be honest, almost everything remains the same between the new Echo Show 5 and the old Echo Show 5. Both devices measure 148 x 86 x 73mm and weigh 410g. They also both have a 5.5-inch touchscreen and they both come with the same design and controls. 

There's a camera cover switch at the top of both devices, along with a microphone on/off button and volume buttons. On the rear of the fabric-covered speaker base there's a power port, while the top of the display has a front-facing camera within the bezel of the top right corner. Both have the same speaker setup too.

All the features are the same across the second generation Echo Show 5 and first generation Echo Show 5 too, including built-in Alexa and everything that comes with Alexa, like smart home control, news and weather reports, games and Alexa Calling. Both also have the ability to stream music from various services, or stream your favourite TV shows from the likes of Prime Video and Netflix.

What's different between the 2nd gen Echo Show 5 and first gen?

Despite looking identical and offering the same features, there are a couple of differences between the first generation Echo Show 5 and the second generation. Here's what is different. 

Front camera

Though the front camera positioning is the same across the new Echo Show 5 and the old Echo Show 5, the new model has a 2-megapixel camera, while the older model has a 1-megapixel sensor with 720p video recording. That means it has a higher resolution for video calls, so video should look better.

3.5mm audio output

The original Echo Show 5 has a 3.5mm audio output on the rear, but this has been removed from the 2021 model. That means you can't cable-link your new Echo Show 5 to another audio device.

Energy efficiency

The new Echo Show 5 is "Climate Pledge Friendly". It is made from 30 per cent post-consumer recycled plastics, 100 per cent post-consumer recycled fabric and 100 per cent recycled die-cast aluminium. Additionally, 99 per cent of its packaging is made of wood-fibre-based materials.

Colours

The new Echo Show 5 is available in Charcoal, Glacier White and Deep Sea Blue colours, while the old Echo Show 5 only comes in Charcoal and Glacier White.

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Conclusion

The second generation Echo Show 5 is identical in design to the first generation model, but it offers a more sustainable build, new colour and a higher resolution front camera - and loses the 3.5mm socket.

The new model is more expensive than its predecessor (while stocks last), and it offers the same processor and features so the older model is still just as capable.

If you want to do your bit for the environment, really like the blue colour option or you want a high resolution front camera for video calls, the 2021 Echo Show is the one you want. If none of those are super important to you, you might find the old Echo Show 5 at a great price and you don't miss out on much.

Writing by Britta O'Boyle. Editing by Chris Hall. Originally published on 18 May 2021.