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Amazon's Alexa in Kitchen Power Grab

Amazon's Alexa in Kitchen Power Grab
Amazon's personal assistant can use a new skill to boss cooking appliances around.

(CCM) — Amazon's Alexa personal assistant has gained new skills that allow it to take control of domestic appliances, Amazon announced today. The artificial personality's new "Geneva" skill allows Amazon Echo, Amazon Dot, and other devices that feature Alexa to control connected GE kitchen appliances in response to voice requests. Users can make simple commands, such as, "Alexa, tell Geneva to preheat the oven to 350 degrees." The Geneva skill can be used with most of GE's connected appliances, which include refrigerators, dishwashers, water heaters, and washing machines. Another skill introduced today allows users to get show times and recipes from Alexa, for example by saying, "Alexa, ask Food Network to send me the recipes for the show I am watching right now."

The new skills are the result of two Amazon initiatives called Alexa Skills Kit (ASK) and Alexa Voice Service (AVS), launched last year, which make it possible for developers and manufacturers to build new capabilities for Alexa and integrate Alexa into their own products. Over 3,000 such capabilities have been launched since the program was unveiled. Earlier this month, Amazon introduced Alexa as a feature on its new Amazon Fire HD 8 tablet.

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