Amazon.com Inc. is willing to team up with competitors Apple Inc. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google if it would help improve customers’ experience with its Alexa voice-activated virtual assistant, an executive working on the platform said.
The online retailer, which is already working with Microsoft Corp. on productivity features for Alexa such as calendar interactions, will put the user first in pursuit of any other partnerships, said Toni Reid, Amazon’s vice president of Alexa and Echo devices, who has been on the team since 2014.
Just a few weeks ago, Apple was hiring brand new software engineers in Cambridge to help improve its Siri service.
Sensing competition, now Amazon is pushing ahead with hiring some brand new tech specialists who can help revolutionise its rival Alexa service. Over on the Amazon careers website, you can now apply for the position of data specialist, to join the dedicated Amazon Echo team right here in Cambridge.
The team is currently working hard building the speech and language solutions behind the Amazon Echo. A data specialist is required in order to analyse speech functions, working with a team of experts to help analyse the speech and interaction data to help create an innovative final product.
Alexa, can now recognise different voices to ensure that the responses are personalised for each user.
This means that multiple users can ask Alexa for their calendar, contacts, emails or curate music lists and the digital assistant would carry out personalised commands depending on the user. With the introduction of this feature, Amazon is playing catch-up with the competition as Google announced the roll-out of this feature for its Home devices, back in April.