Amazon Glow: The Future For Kids That Failed

Amazon Glow

Amazon Glow turned out to be an oddly experimental device launched in October 2021. With a touchpad that is projector sensitive and a touchscreen for video calling, this is the perfect way to interact with your children if you live far away.

However, Amazon has discontinued the manufacture of this product. Therefore, was this product a fluke, or was it simply released at the wrong time? Find out more about this product by reading this post till the end. Here, you will learn about its primary features and the main reason why it failed in the market.

What Is Amazon Glow?

Amazon Glow

Amazon Glow is a touchscreen projector device you can use to interact with your children from miles away. You can simply connect your smartphone app and have your ward use the touchscreen projector mat to interact. You can see each other in the same vein as FaceTime and have fun interacting using puzzles, games, and books!

How To Setup Amazon Glow?

You can set up your Amazon Glow device pretty quickly since every step is already explained in its user manual. But before you can do so, you need to ensure that you have an active Amazon Kids+ subscription. You get this subscription for free because you already get a 1-year free voucher by purchasing Amazon Glow.

However, following the steps in this setup process is incredibly crucial. Therefore, here’s a step-by-step rundown of what you need to do:

  1. First, you need to download the Amazon Glow app on your phone. It’s pretty easy to do so. Take out the Amazon Glow Quick Start Guide and scan the QR code inside it. You can do so on both Android and iOS smartphones or on your Amazon Fire HD 10. However, note that you cannot do so using a computer.
  2. Next, sign in to your Amazon account through the Glow App.
  3. After you have signed in, click on Set up my Amazon Glow device.
  4. Now, you will be asked to connect your smartphone or tablet with the Glow App to the Glow device. You have to do so using Bluetooth.
  5. After you connect with Bluetooth, you need to ensure that your device is connected to the WiFi as well. This is because the device will download software updates when you set it up.
  6. After Bluetooth and WiFi connectivity is confirmed, the power button will appear on your smartphone screen. Simply click on it to allow your Glow device to begin projecting on the Glow Mat.

This is all that you need to do to set up your Glow device for your kids. To ensure that long-distance video calling and interaction happen, you and others need to use the Glow smartphone application.

When you decide to video call your children using the Glow App, follow the same process above. Then, instead of clicking on Set up my Amazon Glow device, click on Connect with someone who has a device.

If you have connected with your child, their name will appear on the screen here as long as they are listed on Amazon Household.

Amazon Glow Features

The main features of Amazon Glow that have attracted people to buy this device are:

1. 8” Touchscreen

This device has two unique things bundled together – a screen and a projector. In the front, you will find an 8” touch screen with a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels. This screen is solely used as a screen your ward will see you in a while on the video call. Plus, it has touch-based on-screen controls for receiving your call and hanging it up.

2. 19” Projector Touchscreen Mat

The Amazon Glow Projector Mat is easily its primary USP. This is a touchscreen mat (more of a “touchmat”) that your child can use as a touchscreen. This white mat is rubbery and displays the device’s projections in the most vivid manner possible when unrolled. The mat is 18.2” wide and 12.1” long. It’s also 0.04” thick.

However, the projection from the device will cover around 19.2”. Therefore, the extra projection at the sides can be counted as the mats bezels. Moreover, its touch and gesture tracking are pretty solid. It’s pretty responsive and easy to use. Amazon also made it with high-quality materials that make the mat easy to clean and ensure it stays white.

2. Interactive Video Chat

One of the main selling points of this device is its ability to allow you to video chat with your ward in the most interactive manner possible. Since the mat and the projections are touch-sensitive, you can play with your child using interactive content.

3. Free Amazon Kids+ Subscription

When you buy this device, you get a coupon inside the box that allows you to get a 1-year free Amazon Kids+ subscription. This subscription is necessary since all the interactive apps you can use can be accessed from this platform.

After a year has passed, you can continue the subscription by paying $2.99 per month. This will let you access lots of interactive content. This includes ebooks and color books for children, with puzzle games to help your ward get sharper. A famous puzzle here is Tangram Bits.

4. Keep Your Camera And Microphone Private

If you think you have other matters to attend to while the video call is active, you can do so with the mute and hide camera button from your Glow App. Similarly, this device has a shutter for blocking the camera, along with a mute microphone button on the screen.

5. 2-Year Guarantee

The Amazon Glow comes out of the box with a free two-year Guarantee. If anything happens to your Glow device – like if it breaks or has software issues, you can return it and get a new one instantly. However, just like always, terms and conditions will apply.

Amazon Glow Review

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Even though I don’t have kids, I decided to become one to review this product. My experiences have been quite positive so far.

The touchscreen controls of the Glow Mat are pretty impressive. Using it felt smooth as the device accurately tracked my touch gestures. Drawing on this mat felt incredibly satisfying. The device’s 8” touchscreen and speakers, along with its camera, are no slouch either. Plus, I loved the addition of a privacy stutter.

However, the main complaints I have are the Glow applications and various connectivity issues. Using the Glow smartphone app sometimes became a hassle as it suffered from multiple bugs and glitches. Sometimes, there was no video displayed on both screens, even though the internet connection and the cameras were perfectly fine.

In addition, some apps failed to load up properly on the FGlowe device. Moreover, even after it did load up, it felt sluggish and unresponsive at times. It was clear that the app was slow, not the Glow mat or the projections.

• Remote interaction with your kids.
• Impressive touch screen and projector.
• Comes with a two-year guarantee and a free year of Amazon Kids+ subscription.
• Lots of unresolved bugs.
• You must subscribe to Amazon Kids+ to use this device.
• You cannot set specific apps as a speed dial or a bookmark for easier access.

Why Is Amazon Shutting Down Amazon Glow?

Unfortunately, even after you just read so far, Amazon has announced that they are shutting down all Amazon Glow services. This news came in October 2022.

The primary reasons why this product failed were because of its niche market and various peculiarities. It’s geared only towards parents with children. Once they become older, the use of this device will become pointless as well since you can simply use a smartphone instead. Plus, the mandatory requirement of a paid Amazon Kids+ subscription was stingy.

On the other hand, its marketing was poorly done as well. Moreover, this is an invite-only product for specific users upon release for six months after its release in October 2021. After that, it failed to garner enough sales in its next six months, labeling this product as a “commercial failure”.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Parents have various queries regarding Amazon Glow, which I have answered below:

Q1. Can Children Use Amazon Glow While Not In A Video Call?

Ans: Yes, they can use this device while not on a video call. Your child can use this device offline as well. Many applications are best used by your ward alone since they are not interactive and are meant to be used during a video session.

Q2. Does Amazon Glow Have Parental Controls?

Ans: Yes, the Glow features the Amazon Parent Dashboard. This allows you to block certain activities of your ward, like video calling unspecified contacts.

Q3. Is Amazon Glow Compatible With Alexa Or Echo Glow?

Ans: Unfortunately, Glow cannot be used with Alexa or even the Amazon Echo Glow. This is a stand-alone device that can only connect to a smartphone.

Bottom Line

Even with various experimental bells and whistles, the Amazon Glow failed to attract buyers. Released as a response to the lockdowns during the height of the pandemic, it was discontinued after a year. Even with great features, it remained a pretty niche-oriented product.If you have used this product, please share your experiences with us in the comments below!

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