Have Your Heard of Alexa? by Market Action Research
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What do you wonder about and do throughout your day? How are you accomplishing these tasks? One of the greatest assets for many people in today’s age is their smartphones and computers. Many people use these devices as tools to accomplish a task or get information of some sort. Welcome in Amazon Echo.
“Alexa, play Thrice on Pandora” After a short pause, but yet quick enough to emulate a natural human cadence Alexa replies “Getting your Thrice radio station from Pandora”. With computer like speed, the Amazon Echo is playing those melodic sounds, which feels instantly rewarding. It’s sort of like being able to scratch and itch the moment you are thinking it.
Notes for Developers: “Alexa” is the invocation that wakes her up.
Alexa isn’t always listening, but you do have to say her name. There is an option in her setting to change her name to Amazon. As of the current version, it has only those two options. We think Alexa is two less syllables than saying “Amazon”, so for brevity and efficiency we will stick with “Alexa”. However, the second you say “Alexa” the light blue ring lights up in a circular motion that has a very modern and future home look. After you say her name, you state your request.
“Alexa, what’s the traffic like?”
“Alexa, volume 4”
“Alexa, set a timer for 6:30 AM”
“Alexa, what’s on calendar today?”
She’s not a search engine, but can make many brands in-home smart devices voice enabled. For instance, many major smart bulb manufactures are already equipped to connect. We’re confident that many other brands will want to connect soon. You can just say “Alexa, turn on the lights” instead of having to get up to walk over to the switch on the wall or login to your phone’s app to turn on or off your light. She can connect to much more than just light bulbs. We’ve seen examples where she connects to televisions, garage doors, and steadily increasing number of apps.
Alexa is very flexible and adaptable, and can be customized to meet a lot of needs. Although she does have a few limitations, it’s pretty incredible to see a product already this polished for a first version. Remember the first iPhone? Although if you ask if she’s better than Siri, she says “I’m not better, just different”, we think it’s worth trying to two side by side with the newest version of Siri, so you can hear and see the difference for yourself.