Amazon Reportedly Prepping Spoken, Push Notifications For Alexa, Echo Speaker

Let’s pretend that you just asked Alexa to get an Uber for you. You go and get ready, but have no idea when your ride will arrive. In order to get that information, you have to ask Alexa when your Uber ride will be at your door. Amazon’s upcoming update, however, means that Alexa will now update you without being prompted.

Amazon plans to update the Alexa assistant in the Echo and Fire HD 8 tablet to speak certain important notifications without being asked by the user. Amazon is referring to this feature as “push notifications”. It is currently unclear which apps or skills will receive the push notifications.

echo on media

Some have argued that Alexa could potentially become annoying with this newfound funtionality. Most smartphone users would probably agree that it is incredibly irritating when your phone dings several times to inform you of often not-so-crucial notifications. It is also unclear what sort of system of permissions will be in place in order to prevent this potential annoyance with Alexa.

The Echo and Alexa have gone through a number of major updates during the last year. The Echo can now enable any of the 1,400 skills that “Alexa” has learned since the 2015 launch. Some of her most recent acquired skills include being able to lock a user’s house doors with voice command and having remote access to Hyundai’s luxury vehicles.
Fire HD 8 Retail

This is not the only Alexa update today. Amazon just announced that Alexa will be available on the new Fire HD 8, a budget-friendly slate tablet. In addition to Alexa, the tablet also boasts a 4,750 mAh battery which can run for up to twelve hours. It is powered by a quad-core 1.3GHz processor and 1.5GB of RAM and contains 16GB or 32GB of onboard storage expandable via microSD (up to 200GB), VGA front-facing camera , 2-megapixel rear camera with 720p HD video recording, dual-band 802.11n Wi-Fi, and dual stereo speakers with Dolby Atmos.