We can consider the Echo devices to be the heart of the Alexa ecosystem, as they make it incredibly convenient to interact with Alexa purely with voice commands whenever necessary, at any place in your home, without the need for any physical interaction with another device.
That being said, even though the Echo devices are designed to be as simple and user-friendly as possible, the existence of many different models can make things slightly confusing at times, especially considering that there can be considerable differences between them.
In today’s article, our topic will be something that users ask very frequently about regarding the Echo Show, in particular, which is the location of the action button that you can easily spot on all the other popular Echo devices, such as the Echo Dot and the Echo Studio.
So, where exactly is the action button on the Echo Show?
You may be surprised to hear this, but the Echo Show does not feature the signature action button that you will find on all the other Echo devices, as the touchscreen (which doesn’t exist on other Echo devices) allows you to perform most of the tasks that would require the action button.
Moving forward, we will further discuss the reasoning behind the absence of the action button on the Echo Show, take a look into the purpose of the action button, find out how to perform tasks that require the action button on the Echo Show, and finally, go through the purpose of the buttons that you can find on the Echo Show.
Where Is the Action Button on the Echo Show?
If you already own other Echo devices but picked up the Echo Show for the first time, the first thing you will notice is that the action button is nowhere to be seen, which can naturally be confusing considering that the action button plays a very significant role in performing many tasks.
Unlike the rest of the Echo devices in the line-up, the Echo Show does not feature an action button, which is the reason that you haven’t been able to locate it on your device.
On the other hand, the Echo Show comes with a touchscreen that you won’t find on other Echo devices, meaning that you can practically think of the touchscreen as the replacement for the action button.
While it’s definitely a sharp change, especially considering that every other Echo device has an action button, we can guarantee that it won’t be long until you get used to the touchscreen and won’t miss the action button anymore.
What Is the Purpose of the Echo (Alexa) Action Button?
The action button that you can find on most Echo devices plays an integral role when interacting with Alexa despite being a simple push button, as it allows you to perform a multitude of different tasks based on when and how you press it.
Below, you can find a list of all the actions you can perform by utilizing the action button on your Echo device:
- Activate Alexa – Press the action button, and wait for the vibration to interact with Alexa.
- Activate Siri or Google Assistant – Press and hold the action button for a second, and wait for the sound cue to interact with Siri/Google Assistant.
- Answer or End Call – Press the action button while on a call.
- Stop Alarm or Timer – Press the action button while an alarm or timer is going off.
- Reject Call – Hold the action button until the call is rejected while an incoming call is present.
- Call Top Contact – Double-press the action button.
- Power Off – Press the action button once, then press and hold for roughly 3 seconds or until you feel a vibration that indicates the device has powered off.
Aside from the actions we have listed above, you can also use the action button to factory reset your Echo device and put it into setup mode again, which will require you to press and hold the action button for 20 seconds.
When the reset is successful, you will observe that the light ring turns off and back on again, at which point the Echo device will be in setup mode.
How to Perform Tasks That Require the Action Button on the Echo Show?
As there is no action button on the Echo Show, you will naturally need to perform each of the tasks that the action button is originally responsible for differently, which can be confusing at first due to being way too used to the presence of the action button.
Since the Echo Show features a touchscreen, you will be able to perform the majority of the tasks that the action button is responsible for, whether it’s answering or ending a call, stopping a timer or alarm, rejecting a call, or calling your top contact, by interacting with the screen whenever necessary.
For instance, when a timer runs out, you will see a Dismiss button that you can press to stop the timer, and when you receive a call, you will see corresponding buttons on the screen that will allow you to accept or reject it.
That being said, it’s worth noting that there are two cases where the Echo Show falls short due to the lack of an action button: activating Alexa and calling the top contact or activating Siri/Google Assistant.
In the case of activating Alexa, your only option is to use the specified wake word, as the Echo Show does not offer an alternative way (such as pressing the action button in the case of other Echo devices) to do so.
On the other hand, in the case of calling the top contact or activating Siri/Google Assistant, the drawback is that you can only choose one of the two actions to be active at a time due to them sharing the same gesture, which you can specify in the Touchpad Press and Hold section.
How to Reset the Echo Show and Put It into Setup Mode?
One particular task that the action button is responsible for is initiating the process of resetting the Echo device and putting it into setup mode, which is done in a whole different way in the case of an Echo Show due to the absence of the action button.
Below, you can find a step-by-step guide that you can follow to reset your Echo Show and put it into Setup Mode by using the touchscreen:
- Bring up the settings menu by either telling Alexa to take you there or swiping down from the top of the screen and pressing the Settings button.
- Locate the Device Options entry and press it.
- Locate the Reset to Factory Defaults option and press it.
- Confirm that you would like to reset your Echo Show by pressing the Reset button on the screen that comes up.
Alternatively, in cases where you cannot utilize the touchscreen, you can press and hold the Mute (mic/camera on/off) and the Volume Down buttons together for roughly 15 seconds (or until you see the Amazon logo on the screen), which will also reset your Echo Show and put it into Setup Mode.
What Is the Purpose of the Buttons on the Echo Show?
Even though it has no action button like other Echo devices, the Echo Show does come with some other buttons that you will find on the top of the frame, allowing you to perform particular actions without having to utilize the touchscreen.
Below, you can find a list of the buttons that you can find on your Echo show, along with a short explanation of the purpose of each button:
- Volume Up – Turns the volume of your Echo Show up (right button).
- Volume Down (Middle – Turns the volume of your Echo Show down (middle button).
- Mic/Camera On/Off – Turns the microphone and the camera of your Echo Show on or off (left button).
- Camera Shutter On/Off (Switch) – This is the physical switch that allows you to turn the camera shutter on or off.
As the Mic/Camera On/Off button turns toggles the status of both the microphone and camera at the same time, in cases where you would like only to disable the camera but not the microphone, we recommend switching off the camera shutter.
There is no denying that the Echo Show is entirely different than the classic Echo devices in a few distinct ways, with the primary difference being the existence of a touchscreen that you can practically utilize like a tablet.
To summarize, you haven’t been able to locate the action button on your Echo Show because there isn’t one available, which can definitely come as a shock at first, especially considering that the action button plays an essential role in performing tasks such as picking up calls or talking to Alexa.
That being said, while the difference in convenience is certainly up for debate, almost everything you can do on a classic Echo device by pressing the action button can also be done on the Echo Show by utilizing the touchscreen, meaning that you’re not missing out on any crucial features at the end of the day.
Mark’s first real encounter with tech was when he had to format his computer with Windows 98 around the age of 6 to quickly get back to playing Heroes of Might and Magic III without having to send the computer in for a repair, which he strangely found to be rather enjoyable since it was a new challenge for him at the time.
While he has always been particularly interested in the software side of things, which eventually led to him becoming a software developer, he enjoys keeping up with the advancements in consumer electronics and smart home technology when he’s not busy coding.