Amazon’s Echo line of internet-connected speakers aren’t the only devices that tap into the company’s Alexa voice service. This year we’ve seen other companies introduce tablets, robots, smartwatches, and portable speakers that use Amazon’s technology to understand and respond to voice commands and questions.
Next year we could see even more.
Amazon and Intel have announced that they’re working on reference designs for smart connected speakers which will make it easy for companies to bring their own Alexa-enabled products to market.
The first such reference design is expected to be available in the first quarter of 2017, and it’s expected to include the mics and speakers required to use a voice-activated system, wireless connectivity including WiFi, Bluetooth and Zigbee and Z-Wave technology for interacting with smart home products, and a software development kit.
Intel has also announced that it’s bringing support for Alexa Skills to Intel-based smart home hubs, allowing you to control lights, locks, thermostats, and other products with your voice.