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article imageSaid Alexa too often? Get ready for custom based voice assistants

By Tim Sandle     Feb 12, 2021 in Business
Amazon is considering different ways for brands to use the Alexa service, without the opening command of 'Alexa'. Is this best for brands or are there alternatives?
Voice assistant technologies remain a hot commodity, given the ubiquity of Alexa and Google Home devices (although oddly, not Apple's Siri to the same extent). The rise of voice assistants has become something that many brands are attempting to latch onto. However, some purveyors of goods are keen not to have their message diluted with an “Alexa” trigger word.
To meet this trend, it is interesting to see that Amazon has announced at the start of February 2021 that it is offering custom-branded voice assistants based on its Alexa platform. This is a move that may lead to greater flexibility in the way that voice assistants are used. It could also, for good or for bad, signal the rise in advertising across the digital voice assistant.
There are alternative approaches, according to Sensory, which is aiming to set the standard for secure, cloud-free voice UI solutions. The company points out, to Digital Journal, the shortcomings in the Amazing approach. These are:
Not all brands need or want their products to require an Internet connection to function. Examples here include cars, appliances, and tools.
Many brands do not want to share their customer data with Amazon (where Amazon could potentially use this data in the future to become a competitor.
Not all companies wish their business at risk by working with a rival.
Sensory is developing a full-feature' drag-n-drop' voice UI development platform. This is intended to enable brands to quickly create custom-branded voice assistants that run on device. This is without recourse to using the Internet.
The aim is for brands to use the platform in order to create free, custom-branded wake words, small-vocabulary command sets or full-blown domain-specific natural language voice assistants. The new application also promises to add multilingual natural language understanding to any product, providing the basis for businesses to offer viable smart hardware at scale.
This alternative approach could be one to rival the direction that Amazon is signalling for its Alexa-based products.
More about Brands, Advertising, Alexa, Amazon
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