I see a lot of tech, it’s WHAT I DO. It’s not too often that I see a new gadget that truely surprises me! The Amazon Glow did exactly that. It’s SO cool. Think of it as a combination of a tablet, webcam, projector and tabletop touchscreen. I took the new Amazon Glow for a test in my home.
The Amazon Glow is interesting. It almost looks like a tower. You have the speaker toward the bottom, an 8″ touchscreen above that, then a camera, above that is the projector. You lay out a white mat (included) in front of the Glow to create a surface for the projector. Power up the Glow and the touchscreen lights up as well as the projector. You can use your finger to interact with the projected image. It operates like a touchscreen and I was pretty impressed with how well it worked!
Software is where it shines
The hardware is important… critical…. but what’s really important is that you don’t notice the hardware. The software side of this has to shine so that your forget about all the cool technology that it takes to make it happen. Amazon did a great job on the software. The menus flow, the games are fun to play and the graphics look great. I had a blast playing Go Fish against cousins in Ohio. Putting together puzzles with the grandparents in Cleveland felt almost as interactive as sitting next to each other at a table. The software did exactly what it’s supposed to do, it made me forget about the technology.
Most importantly, when I set it in front my my daughters, that played for 2 hours. They loved it! That’s the true test.
A few hiccups
As a “Day One” Edition device from Amazon, you have to expect a few rough edges. It’s essentially a beta product that they’re letting people buy early, before it’s 100% ready. There were a few times where the app seemed to get stuck loading. We had to disconnect and reconnect for things to get back on track. Huge deal? No. But you should know this going in that there may need to be a few more software updates before the kinks are worked out.
I love this thing. I’m really blown away by how cool of an experience it really is. Pictures and demo videos don’t do it just. You have to try it to see how cool it is. It also passed the kid test with flying colors! My 6-year-old and 11-year-old were hooked within minutes. Well done Amazon!!