"Voice services are rapidly becoming more popular and through our integration with Amazon Alexa, Toyota and Lexus customers will soon be able to easily speak to Alexa in their cars while on-the-go", said Zack Hicks, senior vice president and chief information officer of Toyota Motor North America and chief executive officer and president of Toyota Connected.
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The Drive reached out to Toyota regarding which cars will receive Alexa integration first, the possibility of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto-equipped Toyotas, and recommendations for drivers less than thrilled with the idea of an always-on microphone embedded in their new vehicle.
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The company will add the feature to additional models in 2019. So apart from asking it some of the usual things, such as playing music or giving a weather report, passengers can also use the service to interact with smart-home devices to turn lights on in their homes or open their garage doors.
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Toyota, whose efficient manufacturing techniques transformed the auto industry, is turning to Alexa to bolster its voice-recognition capability. Meanwhile, Amazon will release Alexa app in the coming weeks, and PC makers are seeking help from Intel's Smart Sound Technology to ensure hands-free access to Alexa on PCs. While Alexa integration could be found all over the CES show floor, Google Assistant made a big CES splash, too. While the company didn't directly attend the event, their product Alexa was found in a range of devices including Kohler's mirror which had the AI inside it. Sounds more like the one from the fairy tales but it was an actual product.