Amazon has released a new iOS widget, dubbed ”Ask Alexa”, that provides quick access to the company's voice assistant, right from the home screen of your iPhone and iPad.
Artificial intelligence is a major focal point for a variety of companies out there. Especially the ones launching "smart" products like smart speakers, and of course services like Siri, Google Assistant, and Alexa. So perhaps it's not too surprising to hear that Apple gobbled up the most companies in an effort to build up its own efforts.
Siri does an okay job of understanding those who query the digital assistant. However, there is still room for improvement. Especially for those with atypical speech. But Apple, and other tech companies, are working on that.
As first spotted by The Ambient, users of Amazon's Alexa app for the iPhone and iPad can now send their requests to the assistant via text messages instead of only using their voice.
Apple introduced a tinier version of its popular HomePod called HomePod mini. This smart speaker is not only smaller in size, but also in price as compared to its parent. Both of these features put the HomePod mini more in the running as a direct competitor to the Amazon Echo.
Whether for yourself or a gift for a loved one, you might be trying to decide between the two (or three including the Amazon Echo Dot). To help, we have a comparison of HomePod mini versus Amazon Echo. Hopefully this will help you pick the best smart speaker for your home or someone else’s.
People in Germany who own an Echo device can now ask Amazon's Alexa smart assistant to stream any audio show available on the Apple Podcasts directory.
As companies were jumping on the digital assistant bandwagon, Microsoft launched its own alternative: Cortana. It proved to be plenty helpful, but Google's and Amazon's dominance in this regard (across platforms, and Siri on iOS) forced Microsoft to make some tough decisions.
Amazon has overhauled its mobile Alexa app for iPhone and iPad around first-party features.
It's a relatively painless process to use Siri and ask the digital assistant to launch an app on your iPhone or iPad, but for folks who prefer to use Amazon's option, Alexa isn't quite there yet.
The European Union has decided that yet another investigatory probe is required into consumer-facing products, and Apple is included in this net, too.
Amazon is allowing users of its Alexa mobile app to use the smart assistant without having to touch the Alexa button at the bottom control bar for voice control. However, the online retail giant calling this feature "hands-free" voice activation is stretching it a bit.