Not only will Amazon customers be able to quickly browse Alexa skills with an easy-to-use interface, but developers will also have the ability to give customers direct access to their skills on Amazon via a single click. “On the page, customers can take actions, like enable and disable the skill and link their accounts,” writes Amazon’s David Isbitski. “For the first time, you can drive customers directly to your skill detail page to increase discovery and engagement for your own skill.”
Customers previously had to login to the Alexa app to discover new skills, however, this is no longer necessary with Amazon’s new “pre-login discovery” process. This also allows developers to “improve organic discovery by search engines by optimizing skill detail pages.”
When searching for new skills via Amazon’s website, you’ll still be greeted with 21 categories ranging from Business & Finance to Movies & TV to Weather. You’ll also be able to sort skills that have been released in the past 7, 30, or 90 days. You can further refine your skills searches based on average customer reviews.
As of today, there are over 4,300 Alexa skills available, which is up from over 3,000 in September.
Back in mid-September, Amazon upgraded the entry-level Echo Dot with new functionality and a lower price tag (dropping from $89.99 to $49.99). The Echo Dot is available in both black and white finishes, and includes Echo Spatial Perception that “intelligently calculates the clarity of the customer's voice” when you have more than one Echo device in your home (so that you don’t have multiple Echo speakers responding to your voice).
The standard Echo is also now available in both black and white.