Amazon's digital assistant is branching out.
REUTERS/Rick WilkingDavid VanderWaal, VP of marketing for LG Electronics USA (L), listens to Mike George, VP Alexa, Echo and Appstore for Amazon, talking about their companies' partnership during the LG press conference at CES in Las Vegas, U.S., January 4, 2017. Although the Alexa app is nearly certainly installed on the mobile of most Echo owners, who would want to fire up the Alexa app when they could just say "Ok Google" on Androids or "Hey Siri" on Apple devices?
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The new Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit can be incorporated into devices like headphones, smart watches, fitness trackers and more. To take advantage of Alexa's capabilities on the AR smartglasses, a wearer needs to be an Amazon subscriber.
Making use of mobile devices also frees Alexa from the requirement to be connected to WiFi - there's no reason that your smartphone's mobile signal can't be used to bounce requests from your earphones to the Internet. Now, Amazon is targeting a host of devices that people, especially the fit and wellness crowd, usually take with them even when going out just for a stroll-their wearables. They have announced greater integration for Alexa by revealing a new Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit that gives hardware manufacturers the opportunity to integrate the technology on their wearable products.
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"Bose is excited to add a remarkable new Alexa experience for our customers", Bose product management director Brian Maguire said in a statement. "Accessing Alexa's music, information, and a vast number of skills on our headphones will become easier than ever, and we're looking forward to bringing our collaboration to life". These include Bose, Jabra, iHome, Linkplay, Sugr, Librewireless, Beyerdynamic, Bowers, and Wilkins.
Alexa-powered smart speakers are already widely popular, but Amazon wants to expand to new horizons and make its digital assistant more ubiquitous.
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The Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit eliminates the need for OEM development teams to perform the bulk of the coding for integrating Alexa into their devices.