Amazon’s connected speaker, Echo, recently received an update that adds support for third-party “skills” that you can access using the voice activated virtual assistant, Alexa.
Want to listen to ABC Headline News, ABC Business News, Good Morning America, Fox Sports, and Jimmy Kimmel Live The Morning After? Just link your iHeartRadio account to the Echo and turn on the appropriate Alexa Skills.
Ask for live scores for the WNBA, in addition to the MLB, MLS, NHL, NFL, NCAA, and NBA. Ask such things as, “Who won the Knicks game last night?” or, “When is the next Mets game?’
Users can also now use Amazon Echo to set up multiple alarms and timers that can be programmed at the same time.
The update also includes integration with a number of different third-party apps. Wink Hub lets you sync and control a variety of different connected devices. With IFTTT integration, you can set timers to turn on and off lights. If you have an Audible account, you can now listen to audio books directly from your account.
You can also check your Google Calendar, listen to Amazon Prime music stations, and connect Pandora for streaming stations. Get traffic conditions before you leave the house with the newly added travel feature
ZDNet also noted that Echo is now compatible with StubHub, the popular online concert ticket website. Two games have been added to the content, Math Puzzles and Crystal Ball. The former is a numbers pattern game and the latter is similar to the Magic 8-Ball toy, in that you ask yes-or-no questions to get a random answer.
The voice-activated, Bluetooth enabled Amazon Echo is available from Amazon for $180.