Amazon Alexa going mobile with new developer tools

Amazon continues to work on a path that is almost directly opposite the one Google took with regards to AI powered assistant technologies. Unlike Google that took their mobile phone search app and started to build their ecosystem around that, Amazon started with their Amazon Echo smart speaker device and has slowly been expanding where and on what the Alexa software is capable of running on. Amazon has announced a major new step for their framework in 2018 with the release of a new Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit for developers to make it easier than ever for Alexa to be added to a wide range of hardware, especially devices that are mobile in nature.

The new Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit can be incorporated into devices like headphones, smart watches, fitness trackers and more. If a voice is Bluetooth audio-capable, by adding the kit, users will be able to connect to the Alexa Voice Service via the Amazon Alexa app on their mobile device. This will give them voice command capabilities just like what they get at home using their “fixed” Amazon devices.

Amazon points out that last year they released the AVS Device SDK, which gave manufacturers the ability to tap into Alexa. However, that required some relatively heavy coding on the part of manufacturers and developers. The new Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit does the same thing, but in a streamlined, lightweight fashion that should help push greater adoption by developers.

Amazon notes in their announcement that several manufacturers are already working on Alexa Mobile Accessories. Some of the names mentioned include Bose, Jabra, and Beyerdynamic.

The new toolset will be available for general developer use later this year.

source: Amazon


About the Author: Jeff Causey

Raised in North Carolina, Jeff Causey is a licensed CPA in North Carolina. Jeff's past Android devices include an HTC EVO, a Samsung Note II, and an LG G3, and a Motorola Moto X Pure Edition along with a Samsung Galaxy Tablet 10.1. He currently uses a Samsung Galaxy S8 and (very rarely) a Nexus 7 (2013). He is also using a Verizon-branded Motorola Moto Z Play Droid supplied by his job. Jeff used to have a pair of Google Glass and a Moto 360 Sport in his stable of gadgets. Unfortunately, his wife and kids have all drunk the Apple Kool-Aid and have i-devices. Life at home often includes demonstrations of the superiority of his Android based devices. In his free time, Jeff is active in his church, a local MINI Cooper car club, and his daughter's soccer club. Jeff is married, has three kids, and a golden retriever.