Amazon’s Echo’s Now Has A Developer’s Kit

June 25, 2015 at 5:59 pm By

When the Amazon Echo was announced it was joked that it could replace the need for a personal assistant. Now it looks like Amazon is giving developers a chance to create commands for Alexa, the voice of Echo.

The retail giant today announced the availability of the Alexa Skills Kit, a set of APIs that lets developers create voice-driven capabilities for Alexa,” according to GeekWire.

“Amazon also announced that Alexa can be integrated with any hardware device, from a phone to a TV. In addition, the company rolled out a $100 million fund to invest in developers building new experiences with the voice-activated assistant.”

While you can’t ask it to bring you some coffee or grab the newspaper from the front-yard, there is still quite a good amount of useful commands that Alexa can complete such as “play Jay-Z’s ’99 Problems.'” The Alexa Skills Kit is now giving developers a shot at going beyond that to create are more voice-driven commands.

Developers who want to add to Alexa’s abilities can write code that works with Alexa in the cloud, letting the smart assistant do the heavy lifting of understanding and deciphering spoken commands,” according to the report.

One of the most interesting features is the fact that Amazon is also pushing Alexa Voice Services. This enables developers to integrate Alexa into other devices free of charge. With their $100 investment, Amazon said they want to help developers and manufacturers push the boundaries of voice-based interaction.

“Echo, the intelligent talking speaker with Alexa inside, was introduced last year and made broadly available this week,” said James Risley, of GeekWire. 

“With today’s news, it’s now clear that the Echo was just a first step for Amazon’s broader push into the voice-activated virtual assistant market, competing against the likes of Apple’s Siri, Google Now and Microsoft Cortana.”

Voice-based interaction can be a little tricky in some instances when it comes to the software misinterpreting your words. However, developers have a shot to help remedy that problem and many more with the Alexa Skills Kit.

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