New smart speaker expected as Apple kicks off conference
- Author: Arturo Norris Jun 05, 2017,
Jun 05, 2017, 14:56
Alexa can now tell you what the polls are predicting, provide information on the main parties and their leaders, and will also provide live updates on June 8 as results come in.
Earlier in May, Google's leaked APK files revealed that the company was finally working on the reminder feature and would update its smart speaker soon. Namely, improved timers and scheduled reminders. You can also check how much time is left on a certain timer by saying "Alexa, how much time is left on my lasagna timer", and it will let you know.
One of Alexa's more practical, everyday uses is setting timers - helpful when cooking, remembering to perform some task, or alerting kids it's bedtime, among other things. It might seem that way, since the update involves the ability to set reminders for specific events, as well as the ability to name your timers individually.
To cancel a timer, just say: "Alexa, cancel the [name] timer". Now it seems that Amazon has chose to roll out an update to Alexa that will introduce some new features which we reckon should have been part of its features right off the bat, and that is the ability to set reminders. For example, "Alexa, ask Uber for a ride", will start the process of summoning a auto, but "Alexa, order me an Uber" will not, because Alexa does not make the connection that it should open the Uber "skill". You'll be able to manage the timers manually via the app, just like the reminders.
The voice-enabled reminders are simple to set up. While the updates are hitting US devices today, Amazon says it will be updating Alexa in Germany and in the United Kingdom to include these new features as well, though the updates for those regions will be "in the coming weeks".
Echo owners can now use commands like "Alexa, set the living room light to green" or "Alexa, turn the kitchen yellow".
Special discounts like the ones Amazon has available right now on the Echo and Echo Dot are believed to help drive tremendous sales. The syncing feature is not yet supported, but may be added at a later point.