Amazon's Fire TV service can now be controlled completely by voice commands, thanks to a new software update. The new feature expands upon a recent overhaul of the service, which allows users to access the firm's Alexa smart assistant via its remote. Now the process is completely hands free and can be activated from Amazon Echo, Dot and other Alexa-enabled devices. Amazon's Fire TV service (picture) can now be controlled completely by voice commands, thanks to a new software update Amazon's Fire TV service can now be controlled completely by voice commands, thanks to a new software update. The changes have been rolled out as part of Fire OS versions 22.214.171.124 and 126.96.36.199.
Amazon's Alexa has made it onto a lot of platforms in the past year and its latest jump will make it easier to find your favorite movies or TV shows. Satellite TV provider Dish announced Monday its digital video recorders can now be paired with Amazon's Alexa in the home. The feature, which is available on Dish's Hopper or Wally DVR models, allows users to give voice commands to Alexa from the Echo, Echo Dot and Amazon Tap to control their TVs. Functions can be used across Dish's live, recorded and on-demand titles and also work with Netflix's catalog. Through Alexa, users can control the playback of a show with functions like time skipping, rewinding, pausing and restarting programs.
Amazon's Alexa may be a useful digital assistant, but it's a lot less useful when you're away from your Echo hardware. Wireless headphone-maker Bragi is looking to bridge the gap between Alexa and your phone with its Dash and Dash Pro earbuds. Thanks to a software update coming in October, you'll be able to talk to Alexa using Bragi's headphones. Once you update your headphones and link your Amazon account in the Bragi app for iOS and Android, you'll be able to start talking with Alexa through your headphones the same way you can with Siri or the Google Assistant. You'll be able to ask Alexa to hail you an Uber or Lyft, play music or news reports, order your usual at Starbucks, add items to your calendar and more.
Alexa, the talking lady who sits inside the Amazon Echo waiting for you to say her name, is having a personality makeover. The talking AI's latest update comes with a range of "speechcons" – little expressions or verbal tics. Alexa will say 100 new words, including "bazinga" and "woohoo". In a nod to nerd culture, she will range from "Kapow!" (Batman) to "Great Scott!" (Superman). She will even quote the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles ("Cowabunga") and The Godfather ("Bada bing!") if she needs to give deeper vent to her feelings.
Fans of Sony's high-end audio products will soon be able to control what they listen to – using the sound of their voices. The Japanese firm has announced that users will be able to use Amazon's Alexa smart assistant to control its soundbar and wireless headphones. This will give them access to tens of thousands of skills built into the AI software, including asking to play music, hear the news, and control smart home devices. Owners of compatible hardware will need to install the latest firmware updates to enable the voice assistant. Sony has yet to confirm the exact headphone and soundbars models that will get the firmware update.