New Device - Amazon Echo Look

Amazon Echo LookYesterday Amazon announced a new Amazon Echo device called the Amazon Echo Look.  The Echo Look is intriguing in that it will be the first Echo device that comes with a built-in camera.

Peter Thu, 04/27/2017 - 14:28

Alexa Dev Chat Podcast - Edpisode 12

Submitted by Peter on Fri, 04/21/2017 - 19:27

Episode 12 has just been released of the Alexa Dev Chat Podcast.

The following is the podcast details:

In the episode Dave chats with Sameer Lalwani, Sr. Program Manager on the Alexa Skills Certification team at Amazon. Sameer shares best practices for getting your skill published as well as guidance for building more engaging skills for customers.


Google Home First Impressions

Submitted by Peter on Mon, 04/10/2017 - 09:47

I recently bought a Google home so that I can do a proper comparison between the Echo and the Home. The setup was extremely easy, I just needed to download the Google Home App from the app store and ensure my phone was connected to the WiFi. One thing that surprised me was that I was not prompted to connect to the Home via WiFi or Bluetooth. When I opened the app it started the setup process and asked me to decide which wireless network my Home should connect too.

Interesting Click Episode

For anyone interested in Smart assistants such as the Google Home or Amazon Echo the BBC News show Click heavily focuses on Smart assistants.

The piece raises some interesting questions regarding the security of trusting such devices for controlling the home environment. The piece also raises the potential that as the services increase their knowledge about you that they will start tailoring prices for items you purchase using voice assistants. This really that far fetched. Amazon has fallen foul of this several times in the past.

Peter Sun, 04/09/2017 - 01:40
Alexa Device Location Availability

Yesterday Amazon announced a new API that skill developers can now take advantage of, the device address API. Up until now if you needed to know the locality of the user you would be required to prompt the user to tell you (of course making sure you made use of the appropriate locality slots).

Peter Sat, 04/08/2017 - 12:54

Alexa Dev Chat Podcast - Edpisode 11

Submitted by Peter on Fri, 03/24/2017 - 23:31

Episode 11 has just been released of the Alexa Dev Chat Podcast.

The following is the podcast details:

In the episode Dave catches up with Zach Parker, head of Business Development for Alexa Smart Home at Amazon. The two discuss recent product innovations, new customer experiences and current Smart Home industry trends.


New Logo Mockup Tool

Submitted by Peter on Fri, 03/24/2017 - 21:56

A few days agoI posted that I had released a photoshop file on Github that should help when designing Alexa Skill logos.

Today I have completed a similar simple tool. The new tool simply demonstrates how a logo may show when displayed on the Alexa Skill store or in the skills app. The new tool can be found in the newly created Alexa Skills section (which can be found in the top links. Alternatively access it directly HERE.

I am always keen on receiving feedback or suggestions. Be sure to let me know what you think.