Amazon Alexa

GLAS thermostat adds Alexa and Google Assistant support as preorders open

GLAS thermostat adds Alexa and Google Assistant support as preorders open

The striking GLAS thermostat has gained Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant support, with the two new AIs joining Cortana as the smart home gadget goes up for preorder. Announced last year, the voice-controlled HVAC controller has a distinctive translucent OLED screen which stands proud of the wall it's mounted on.

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Alexa-Cortana integration: How to get started

Alexa-Cortana integration: How to get started

If you're in the mood to combine your Amazon and Microsoft-made smart assistants on any one device, today's your day. Alexa can open Cortana and Cortana can open Alexa. Because there might be a very rare instance in which you want one or the other, this particular tie-in is live. It's just live in preview mode when this article is first published, but live nonetheless.

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Alexa is about to invade one US college campus

Alexa is about to invade one US college campus

It seems that even Alexa is participating in the back to school rush this year. Today, Saint Louis University announced that it will outfit "every student residence hall room and student apartment on campus" with an Alexa device. All told, that means SLU is outfitting student living spaces with around 2,300 Echo Dots.

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Amazon, Microsoft launch Alexa and Cortana integration public preview

Amazon, Microsoft launch Alexa and Cortana integration public preview

Almost one year ago exactly, Amazon announced plans to integrate Microsoft's Cortana with its Alexa personal assistant. Under this integration, Alexa will be able to communicate with Cortana, and Cortana will also be able to communicate with Alexa. Today Amazon revealed the latest evolution in this plan, introducing a public preview that enables customers to experience the new functionality.

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Sonos update brings Alexa Announcements to One and Beam

Sonos update brings Alexa Announcements to One and Beam

Sonos' Alexa-powered smart speakers are catching up with one of the more useful features of Amazon's Echo range, turning them into a useful home announcement system. Amazon Announcements was launched back in early April, as a way to broadcast messages across every speaker in the home.

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Alexa Auto SDK sees Amazon hitch a ride in car infotainment

Alexa Auto SDK sees Amazon hitch a ride in car infotainment

Alexa's attempts to be your copilot in the car continue, with Amazon releasing a new toolkit for automakers to more readily bake the smart assistant into the dashboard. The Alexa Auto SDK follows a handful of car companies that have already announced - or launched - Alexa integration, allowing drivers to ask questions, play media, and remotely control their smart home, all by voice.

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Bose QC35 II now lets you speak with Amazon Alexa

Bose QC35 II now lets you speak with Amazon Alexa

There is no shortage of Bluetooth headsets these days advertising active noise cancellation features. Bose’s QuietComfort line, however, remains one of the preferred brands in that market. Last year, Bose launched the QuietComfort 35 II, a.k.a. the QC35 II, with the signature feature of letting you use Google Assistant at the push of a button. Since then, Bose has also become one of Amazon’s close friends so it’s not surprising, and in fact a bit belated, that it is now announcing the addition of Amazon Alexa to its feature list.

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Almost no one buys via Amazon Alexa: this is why

Almost no one buys via Amazon Alexa: this is why

After the failure of the Fire Phone, it was completely unexpected that the Amazon Echo would end up causing both Google and Apple to scramble to catch up. But while Amazon practically created and continue to lead the new smart speaker market, it has ironically failed at the very thing it created the Echo for: helping Amazon customer buy stuff. It turns out, only a minuscule percentage of users shop via Alexa and it’s not that hard to see why.

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Alexa starts issuing “Answer Update” alerts for old queries

Alexa starts issuing “Answer Update” alerts for old queries

Ask Alexa enough questions and you'll eventually find one she can't answer. The personal assistant apologizes for its lack of a proper response, and now it has started issuing alerts when it finally learns the answer. The new ability is called "Answer Update," and it's exactly what it sounds like: a new answer to an old question. The user will need to enable the feature to use it, though.

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Just 2% of Alexa users tried to buy stuff with voice in 2018 [UPDATE: Amazon Statement]

Just 2% of Alexa users tried to buy stuff with voice in 2018 [UPDATE: Amazon Statement]

Sources this week suggested that Amazon's Alexa devices aren't working exactly the way they'd been expected to work with regard to other Amazon products. In the report, it's said that in the year 2018, (so far,) just 2% of users of Alexa products tried to purchase a product on Amazon with their voice. Of those that tried to make a purchase with Alexa, a whopping 90% never tried to buy another product with their voice through the service.

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New Alexa Away Mode skill aims to scare off burglars with goofy audio

New Alexa Away Mode skill aims to scare off burglars with goofy audio

Among the many tricks homeowners can use to deter break-ins while they're away is to leave things like lights or a radio/TV on, in turn making burglars think that someone is home. But there's a new skill for Amazon's Alexa that puts an interesting twist on this idea. Dubbed "Away Mode," the skill will play audio recordings of lengthy conversations, once again to make it seem like someone is home, but the actual context of these conversations are ridiculous and hilarious.

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Amazon Echo EQ control lets Alexa drop the bass

Amazon Echo EQ control lets Alexa drop the bass

Amazon's Echo smart speakers are gaining an equalizer, and it could well be the easiest to control ever. The new Alexa EQ feature will allow Echo owners to adjust how the treble, midrange, and bass are weighted on their speaker.

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