Amazon Alexa will be available on headphones, watches, and more in 2018
Although Amazon Alexa is most prominent on smart speakers, we've seen the AI expand to the likes of smartphones, thermostats, and more over the past couple years. However, one frontier that Alexa's never been very prominent in is that of wearables. A handful of smartwatches have launched with Alexa built-in, but for the most part, these have been few and far between. Starting in 2018, Amazon wants to change that.
On the official Alexa blog, Amazon announced its new Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit (opens in new tab). The main goal of the Kit is to make it considerably easier for developers to integrate Alexa into their wearable devices, and the way this is done is actually pretty ingenious.
Rather than making developers load Alexa directly onto their gadgets, the Kit allows wearable tech to seamlessly connect to the Alexa Voice Service on the Amazon Alexa app on Android and iOS phones. Essentially, voice commands you issue on your wearable are sent to your phone, the response from Alexa is obtained, and this is then relayed through your watch, headphones, etc. This does require your phone to be connected to your wearables in order for Alexa to work, but it makes adding the AI to these devices much easier.
The Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit won't be launching until "later this year", but Amazon's already working with the likes of Bose, Beyerdynamic, Jabra, and iHome to release future products with this tech. In other words, it won't be too much longer before we start seeing Alexa-powered headphones, watches, and fitness trackers flood the market.
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Joe Maring was a Senior Editor for Android Central between 2017 and 2021. You can reach him on Twitter at @JoeMaring1.
Lately, Amazon's been all about getting Alexa in more hardware. They are lacking in innovating the service with the hardware.
That's very true but it's open api and things might be getting worked on in the background. By the time they do the market will be flooded with all these devices that take alexa commands all the while Google is selling $400 speakers...
I agree with the comment above. I respect Amazon making Alexa the household name for smart home speakers but Google's services and features are far better. Alexa on more devices had very little added benefit for me and I have both Alexa and Google Home/Max. It's time that Google steps up even more with marketing and putting Assistant on more devices.
Amazon blew it with the Fire Phone. All it’s problems would be solved if it just had a mobile phone platform. It would probably rule the world.