TheNFAPost Podcast
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Over the past month, Alexa and Amazon Devices have under gone some new developments and added a few new features

This to make Amazon devices to improve and make it more useful to customers

Bengaluru, NFAPost: Amazon Prime Day is back this year for 48 hours on the 6th and 7th of August with a host multiple offers on products, including best deals on Amazon Echo devices, Fire TV and the Kindle.

For the first time ever, Prime Day will have an Alexa exclusive incentive on Wipro smart bulbs when you shop from any Amazon Echo device. Deals range across flat 40% off on Fire TV Stick and Fire TV Stick 4K, up to 60% off on Echo devices, and INR 4000 off on the Kindle and much more

Navigating the lockdown with Alexa: Undeniably, the Covid-19 lockdown has changed the lives of people. Now consumers are spending more time at home and remotely managing professional lives. Lines between work, play and home have blurred as we settled down. WFH routines became the new normal.

Amazon India Senior Manager for Alexa Experience & Engagement Dipa Balakrishnan says during the lockdown, Alexa kept pace as more customers turned to their favorite AI to stay on track, start new hobbies and seek entertainment at home.

“The first few weeks of the lockdown began with endless calls and meetings. Our good old ‘water cooler conversations’ that provided welcome breaks at office were replaced with new Alexa reminders to “drink water”. As of last week, Alexa reminded customers to drink water or take medication every 2 minutes. Requests for workout music increased 3x as we all started fitness routines from home,” said Amazon India Senior Manager for Alexa Experience & Engagement Dipa Balakrishnan.

NEW FEATURES

YouTube Kids App on Fire TV: The YouTube Kids app was rolled out on Fire TV devices all over the world. YouTube Kids is a separate app, designed to provide a safer experience for kids that is more fun for them to explore on their own. The app was designed to meet kids’ needs, like larger buttons for easier interaction. Read more about YouTube Kids and other ways to entertain your family with Fire TV here.

Alexa’s collection of stories expands with Audible: Asking for stories is one of the most popular requests to Alexa. Now, in addition to reciting her original stories, Alexa will give users the option to hear stories from Audible for free. Just say, “Alexa, tell me a story” or “Alexa, kahani sunao” to listen to stories from a selection of carefully curated and handpicked Audible titles. These include classic tales by Ruskin Bond, Premchand, Rabindranath Tagore, the evergreen Karadi Tales, and popular storyteller Neelesh Misra’s Qisse Lockdown Ke and Yoddha, amongst numerous others.

Alexa Hands-Free Access on Mobile App: Customers can now also talk to Alexa when they’re on the go. The latest update to the Alexa app enables customers to control smart home products, make shopping lists or listen to music, hands-free, when the Alexa App is on the screen, by just asking Alexa. The feature is available for all iOS and Android users of the Alexa App.

Alexa App debuts newly-designed home screen: The Alexa app now comes with a new home screen, updated navigation and a sleek new design to help customers get things done quickly with Alexa. The update gives customers access to frequently-used app features directly on the home screen while navigating a simplified layout to find everything they need. As customers continue to use the Alexa app, it will provide more personalised suggestions based on what customers care about most.

NEW SKILLS

Network18 Alexa Skills: Network18, India’s leading news network announced the launch of 16 new Alexa Skills across 12 languages for users of Amazon Echo and Alexa built-in devices. As part of the launch, users will get access to live news from Network18’s top channels- CNN-News18 and News18 India, along with their regional TV channels in Hindi, Gujarati, Bangla, Marathi, Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, Assamese, Punjabi, Odia and Urdu. These new skills will be available in audio and video formats for both screen devices like Echo Show range and FTV as well as all other Echo and Alexa built-in devices. Users can just say, “Alexa, Play CNN-News18”, “Alexa, Play News18 Tamil” or “Alexa, Play News18 Kannada” to listen to the latest news in the language of their choice.

Free Stories from Audible Suno available on Alexa: Audible Suno is a free audio streaming service that gives you unlimited access to hundreds of hours of audio entertainment. With the launch of their Alexa skill, users can now say “Alexa, open Audible Suno” or “Alexa, Audible Suno shuru karo”, to open the Audible Suno library, consisting of popular titles like Thriller Factory, Yoddha, Be Stupid with Vir Das, Azaad Awaaz,and many more.Users can access content in Hindi and English, completely free with no payment details, advertisements or sign up process. These titles can be accessed on all Amazon Echo and other Alexa built-in devices.

Amazon India Senior Manager for Alexa Experience & Engagement Dipa Balakrishnan states as India tuned in to the Ramayan and the Mahabharata on TV, Alexa brushed up her mythology.

“She answered trivia questions like, “Alexa, who is Jatayu’s brother?”, “Alexa who were the sons of Ravana”, even as Alexa skills like ‘Stories from Mahabharata’ and ‘Ramayan Katha’ gained popularity in March & April. With the newly launched Audible Suno skill in June, we can now listen to Mahabharata with Devdutt Pattanaik,” states Amazon India Senior Manager for Alexa Experience & Engagement Dipa Balakrishnan.

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