Expanding its voice-enabled capabilities, Amazon is rolling out the Announcements feature across all of Alexa-compatible devices. Launched in 2018, the feature lets users send a short voice message to Alexa-enabled devices that are part of the same network with a single voice command.
Amazon says that Announcements is "available for certified Alexa built-in products to implement and new ones that pass the provided self-tests and certification," The Verge reported on Saturday.
Users can send out their announcements by saying, "Alexa announce that/tell everyone/broadcast". The message would then be announced via any Alexa-compatible device including Amazon Fire TV Cube, Sonos speakers, Facebook's Portal and others. The feature was initially rolled out to Echo, Echo Plus, Echo Dot, Echo Show and Echo Spot devices.
Earlier in 2017, Google had introduced the same functionality as part of Google Home line of smart speakers, which allowed users to broadcast one message to all Assistant-enabled devices. The feature at hand can prove to be quite useful in multi-room Alexa-powered speaker setups, in the sense that it would allow all residents of the house to easily communicate with each other, while minimising physical effort.
Amazon has been steadily adding skills and features to its Alexa ecosystem, in a bid to make it more natural and wholesome. Earlier this month, Amazon added the ability for Alexa on Windows 10-powered PCs to work handsfree, hence essentially converting any Windows 10-powered computer into an Alexa-enabled device.
With these new features, Amazon will hope to combat its prime rival Google in taking over the smart home ecosystem space. Google has also ramped up efforts by launching its new Nest lineup of IoT products, and it remains to be seen which gains precedence over the other, in the long run.
(With inputs from IANS)