Amazon Announces New Alexa Skills

Psychology and Tech Addiction

Amazon’s annual Fall product announcement is a highlight for many and has been growing each year. From Echo, Echo, Auto, the failed Fire Phone, Amazon is never at a loss for new tech.

The successful and well-established Echo has a few new features such as…

“Alexa, tell me what you heard?” and “Why did you do that?”

This feature seems unimportant but can help Alexa with learning your voice for a more seamless user interface. Upon asking Alexa those questions, she will tell you exactly what she heard and why Alexa performed a certain action. This allows for users to manage misheard voice commands.

Deleting voice recordings

This feature has been added due to privacy concerns. The commands “delete what I just said” or “delete everything I said today” will do just that. Amazon is also introducing an auto delete Alexa skill which will delete all voice recordings from commands every 3 or 18 months.

Frustration Detection

Alexa can now sense you are mad at her for not playing the song you wanted. She will apologize and attempt the correct command.

Wi-Fi Control

Certain routers can now sync to Alexa to control Wi-Fi settings on the devices in your home. You can say things like” Alexa, pause the Wi-Fi on the iPad.” This feature is great for parents who want to monitor screen time.

Education API

This one won’t be popular with kids. A new API will allow education services like grade tracking to connect with Alexa. Linking a school’s API with Alexa can share homework and grade information with parents.

Alexa Hunches

This skill has been announced previously but is finally seeing a launch. If you tend to perform certain actions together or back-to-back, Alexa will pick up on your next action and start it for you (Alexa has a “hunch” what you’re going to do next). For example, turning off the lights or locking the door.

Source: CNET