New features and important new moves for Alexa.
It seems that Amazon wants more control in the mobile world.
Alexa for apps is the newest project Jeff Bezos’ company is working on that will allow users to launch apps for iOS and Android with a voice command.
All it takes is a query submitted through Alexa to be sent directly to the mobile app.
Amazon’s focus has shifted from voice-first apps for smart speakers and other supported devices, to mobility and then to machines and smartphones (think Alexa Auto).
Many smartphone manufacturers, such as Huawei, Motorola, HTC or LG, have included Alexa as the default voice assistant in their products.
Many other manufacturers give the possibility to set Alexa as the default voice assistant, but they are still supported by Google Assistant and therefore Alexa remains in the background as it is not fully integrated with the operating system.
That’s why Alexa for Apps represents a first step towards taking more control of smartphones.
Alexa app is already present in over 100 million smartphones and now when you open it, it will give the user the chance to be taken to another mobile app with a voice command.
For now this new feature is in the preview form phase, i.e. open to selected developers to understand how they would like to use it.
The idea of Amazon is that a person can ask to open Twitter and search for a hashtag, with the result that will appear on the smartphone screen instead of being spoken aloud by Alexa.
Or launch TikTok and start recording a video without ever having to touch the screen. Useful function for those who film themselves.
Sean Kim, Head of Product for TikTok, showed a lot of enthusiasm for this new feature:
“Our app is extremely engaging once you’re watching… Alexa for Apps helped us add fast ways for users to discover, search, and consume content in our app. It also allows our creators to record hands-free just by saying ‘Alexa, ask TikTok to start recording!’ This saves our users time and allows them to get even more creative.”
Below you can see the video presentation that Tik Tok has released for the new Alexa for Apps integration.
In 2014, a historic and very rare event, Amazon had a project fail. It was their smartphone.
Evidently already then there was the goal of reaching users in a more direct and continuous way, through an object that we all hold in our hands for several hours a day.
If we talk about smart home, Alexa is already used by millions of people. But if we talk about mobile, Apple’s Siri and Google Assistant are much more used.
With this move, the hope is to set itself as a mobile alternative to the 2 most established competitors.
Developers will have to think about Alexa skills already with this integration or redesign those already created with this new possibility.
This is exactly what this phase of work will focus on, and then launch the beta phase and then make the feature public.
These days Alexa for Apps is being added to apps like TikTok, Twitter, Uber, Yellow Pages, Zynga and others.
The possibility to control mobile apps with Alexa is still limited and this new feature doesn’t completely fill the gap with Siri and Google Assistant which, as said, are native to their respective operating systems.
However, it’s an important first step by Amazon that opens the door to different possibilities and offers a bridge between voice and apps.
We’ll see how much this innovation will increase the value of Alexa from mobile in the eyes of users.
What’s certain is that, if the control over the apps will increase, offering a true voice experience even from a smartphone, the scenario becomes very interesting.
We’ll keep you updated with our articles.
In the meantime, if you are ready to enter the voice world and test the possibilities, you can create your own voice app with IPERVOX by clicking “Start for free” below.
See you soon,
CEO and Founder of IPERVOX