Items tagged with amazon alexa

Amazon just announced their first branded televisions: the Fire TV Omni Series and Fire TV 4-Series. They will be available this October in the United States direct from Amazon and long-time retail partner Best Buy. The Fire TV Omni Series “integrates the Fire TV experience and far-field voice technology directly into the TV.” This allows users to speak to Alexa regardless of whether the television is on or off. Users will be able to ask Alexa to find their favorite show, control playback, manage brightness and TV volume, and switch inputs. Users can set up a routine as well by saying commands like “Alexa, kick off my day.” Alexa will turn on the TV and lights in the home,... Read more...
What is all that noise and hullabaloo? It sounds like Amazon introducing the all-new Echo Buds that are smaller, lighter, and produce better sound for just $119. Announced today, the new Echo Buds have a wealth of new technologies which make them better than before. The big selling point of the new Echo Buds is that they are 20% smaller, lightweight, and IPX4 rated, meaning they can withstand splashes, sweat, and light rain. This means they can go nearly wherever you go and should be comfortable and hopefully imperceptible throughout the day. The earbuds also come with four ear tip sizes and two wingtip sizes, so you can customize them for your best fit and seal for audio quality. Making sure... Read more...
Amazon has long been working on trying to make users’ lives more convenient with connected devices. They initially introduced the concept of “Hunches” in 2018. This allowed Alexa to inform a user when something was not quite right with their connected device and offer to fix the issue if possible. The company has recently taken Hunches to the next level by enabling Alexa to proactively complete tasks based on the user’s habits without asking for permission beforehand. Alexa is now able to interact with various smart devices without needing to inform users about their actions. These devices include lights, plugs, smart locks, thermostats, and vacuums. According to... Read more...
Amazon’s Fire TV experience is an all-in-one way to watch television shows, movies, and more. The platform is getting better, with a user interface update coming today. The update, announced back in September, brings a redesigned home screen, a new search experience, and user profiles to make life easier. First and foremost is the redesigned home screen, which takes the cake as the best part of this update. Amazon described it as “the single destination for you to access all of your fave content.” From here, you can bounce between TV shows or movies over to the main menu that has options such as “Find, Live, Library” and pinned apps that you want easy access. The... Read more...
Marshall is a brand name that’s mostly known for creating amplifiers that are used by musicians electric guitars. That’s not all the company has in its lineup with it unveiling a new Uxbridge Voice smart speaker with Amazon Alexa. The intelligent speaker is offered in a white or black cabinet and is shaped to look like one of the company’s amps. Marshall says that the Uxbridge Voice is designed to combine its legendary sound with the helpfulness of Amazon Alexa. That makes the slick-looking little speaker able to do all the things Alexa enables using voice commands. The small speaker promises big sound with high-end components inside promising clarity. The Marshall Uxbridge... Read more...
Over the last decade, consumers have increasingly come to rely on online music stores and streaming services. Many large online retailers and tech companies boast their own streaming services, including Amazon. However, until today Amazon Music was not accessible to all Alexa-enabled device. Amazon just announced that American customers will now be able to access a selection on Amazon Music playlists through Alexa-enabled devices for free. Alexa-enabled devices will be able to listen to a variety of ad-supported playlists and radio stations. Users can ask Alexa to stream playlists based off of a song, artist, era, or genre. For example, users can say “Alexa, play the Imagine Dragons... Read more...
We’ll see your 100 million assistant devices and raise you 1 billion. Google announced that it expects to sell one billion Google Assistant devices by the end of the month. The company's boast is in response to Amazon’s announcement that they had sold 100 million Alexa devices. Amazon SVP of devices and services, Dave Limp, recently remarked that 100 million Alexa devices have been sold since Alexa’s release in 2014. This number includes both Amazon devices and other products that ship with built-in Alexa. Not to be outdone by Amazon, Google reported that they have sold 10X the number of Google Assistant devices since 2016. That estimate includes both Google products and... Read more...
Are you a big Jimmy Fallon fan? Well, now his jokes can follow you throughout your home. In a new collaboration with Amazon, Jimmy Fallon will provide a stream of corny jokes for Amazon Alexa-enabled Echo and other devices. If you ask Alexa to “tell me a joke”, she will introduce you to her “friend Jimmy”. Fallon announced on his show, “For the first time ever, [Amazon is] using a voice other than Alexa’s to tell you a joke—and that voice is me.” Fallon worked alongside Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon writers to develop exclusive content for the collaboration. Many of the jokes are holiday-themed. For example, “What does a turkey say after... Read more...
NVIDIA has announced a new control feature for the Shield TV media player that brings another way to control Shield with your voice. A new Alexa Skill has launched that allows hands-free control of Shield TV using an Amazon Alexa device. The Alexa Skill for Shield TV owners makes the NVIDIA device the only video streamer that can be controlled with both Amazon Echo and Google Home devices. Alexa can be used to navigate and enjoy movies, TV, music, and more. NVIDIA also notes that the Shield TV features Dolby Atmos passthrough support for Prime Video. To enable Alexa voice control, users will need to open the Alexa app, click the menu button, select "Skills & Games" and search for NVIDIA Shield... Read more...
Amazon talked up its new Whisper Mode back in September, when it outlined how it was able to get the feature to work. What Whisper Mode does is allow Alexa to respond to a whispered command with a whispered response. Why would you need this? One usage scenario would be for people using an Alexa device in a room where others are sleeping, be it a baby or spouse, with less chance of waking them up. When the feature was announced, Amazon promised it would launch in October; Amazon made good on the promise with today’s launch. Whisper Mode works with U.S. English and is rolling out right now. The feature does have to be enabled before it will work, that can be done via the Alexa App under Settings-... Read more...
Robots may not yet be doing [all of] our household chores, but we are getting a little closer to this fantasy. The Brilliant Smart Home Controller with Amazon Alexa built-in is now available for purchase. The product promises to simplify the smart home experience and eliminate the use of smartphones and smart speakers such as Amazon Echo and Google Home. The Brilliant Smart Home Controllers will replace any existing light switch in one’s house. The user will then have touch and voice control over Sonos, Nest, Philips Hue, Ecobee, Ring products in their home. Users will be able to control their Sonos Home Sound System, adjust the room temperature, be able to see who is knocking on their... Read more...
Amazon's Alexa AI assistant is a neat device that can perform all sorts of tasks, from answering questions to controlling your smart home and controlling video playback, among many other useful talents. Alexa has also been known to be downright creepy on occasion. It wasn't too long ago that Alexa was laughing maniacally and freaking out users. Alexa has also recorded private conversations and sent them out to at least one owner's contacts. Amazon did, however, give a convoluted explanation of how that happened and vowed to change things so that situation wouldn’t arise again. However, Alexa's latest creep-show may be an ever tougher situation to explain away. Alexa has allegedly done... Read more...
Virtual assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant have been growing in popularity in recent years as more and more devices gain support for the assistants. This growth is coming despite some significant privacy issues with Alexa recently, notably when the Amazon Alexa device recorded a private conversation and sent it to a random contact on the device. Amazon came back with a convoluted answer as to how that breach of privacy happened and vowed to make it so this couldn't happen again. The image below shows a screenshot claimed to be of a coming Xbox One build that offers users the ability to enable voice control with digital assistants. In that image available assistants called out include... Read more...
Smart assistant devices are very common today with the most popular line of speakers and devices with a voice assistant inside being the Amazon Echo with 70% of the voice enabled speaker market. Mattel, the company who makes many of the toys kids go crazy for, was set to bring its own voice assistant to market in 2018 called Aristotle. The thing was that this speaker wasn't designed for placement in the kitchen or family room for adults to use; it was marketed as a device that could help take care of children and grow up with them. Mattel announced this week that Aristotle was being cancelled and would not be coming to market. The decision was made after a petition gathered over 15,000 signatures... Read more...
GE and Amazon are hoping to light up your life. The two companies just released more information about their Alexa-powered smart lamp, including a new name, release date, and price tag. Jeff Patton, General Manager of Connected Home Products for GE Lighting, remarked at the product's announcement six months ago that, “It’s really about simplifying and extending an experience for consumers, allowing them to add smart capabilities throughout the home through a really simple form factor Consumers don’t need a cell phone, a special switch or a hub. They just need their voice.” The unique lamp, originally referred to as C by GE, has been renamed C by GE Sol. The new name reflects the lamp’s unique... Read more...