What you need to know
- Amazon's Alexa can help you find your next read with a new command.
- The new feature is available on all Alexa enabled devices in the U.S.
- The assistant will pull data from your past reading and shopping history to help you choose when you say "Alexa, what should I read next?"
It's safe to say that Amazon owns a lot of book stuff. It started as a bookstore, so it sells a lot of paperbacks. It owns the Kindle store, so it's essentially a synonym for e-books at this point. it owns the Audible audiobook platform, and it also owns Goodreads for reviews and recommendations. The company's newest update to Alexa leverages all that to help you find your newest book.
Amazon today announced a new "Alexa, what should I read next?" command. Once triggered, the digital assistant will let you filter by genre and authors, as well as share ratings, and reviews.
Writing in an FAQ, Amazon explained:
Alexa can find general recommendations for you (she learns from your past book purchases on Amazon.com, Audible, and Kindle). Alexa can also give recommendations in a specific genre (e.g., "how about some science fiction?"), in a specific format (e.g., "recommend an audiobook"), and by a specific author (e.g., "find new books by Dan Simmons").
As we noted Amazon's new feature is possible because it owns the Kindle platform, one of the largest platforms for traditionally published and self-published books alongside Goodreads. It's a lot of power that the company hasn't always wielded responsibly, and this is one of its more benign uses. The feature is being made available to customers in the U.S. today, and you'll be able to use it on any Amazon Alexa enabled device.
The Echo Dot with Clock is the nicest Amazon Echo Dot till date. Its digital clock adds an extra element that replicates the bedside clocks of yore, and the microphones and sound quality still impress us.
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