Amazon Improves Alexa Wake Word Accuracy To Make Echo Less Annoying

Lena Tucker
May 17, 2017

Amazon is trying to make sure that when an Alexa device wakes up, it's because you really called out "Alexa". The ability to add notifications to skills and devices will be made available through. both Amazon's software and hardware development kits, but initially it's going to roll out for a small group of select partners skills, as well as for Amazon.com shopping updates.

Not content with just announcing a new addition to its Echo line of smart speakers, Amazon continues to upgrade Alexa to be your go-to digital assistant.

Alexa is about to get more assertive.

If you're an Alexa skill developer, you might have to wait a while before you can add notifications to your skills - Amazon says the updated SDK will arrive "in the coming months". They won't receive any notifications from skills that they've not allowed to send them notifications. A green notification light spins around the top of the Echo showing a user that there's a voice message; the same light will be used as a notification indicator for third-party apps. "Users can simply ask, 'Alexa, what did I miss?" or 'Alexa, what are my notifications?' and Alexa will inform users of the latest breaking news".

It will be interesting to see how developers use this feature in the future.

Amazon said that when the service becomes available, it'll only work if customers opt-in. That means developers will have to design an experience that doesn't overwhelm users who are away from the Echo for hours at a time, while still being useful to those who are constantly around it.

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