Amazon releases tool to bring Alexa into Bluetooth headphones and wearables

Amazon releases tool to bring Alexa into Bluetooth headphones and wearables
Amazon has released the Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit to third-party developers, putting the voice assistant into a new device category - communication wearables to allow for hands-free listening.

The Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit was first introduced in January 2018, to bring Alexa into Bluetooth headphones, headsets and wearables. Companies including Bose, Jabra and Sony have made Bluetooth headphones based on this software development kit.
 
This SDK enables devices to communicate with a phone’s Alexa app over Bluetooth and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) transmission without manual actions. It eliminates the effort from a developer to build an app or Alexa skill on their own.
 
Alexa is available on both iOS and Android systems. In other words, the development tool will let mobile users talk to Alexa hands-free when they are on the way.

“By leveraging the Amazon Alexa app that is readily available for Android and iOS, device makers accelerate product development, software integration and testing time, while reducing product support costs. After launch, their products are automatically updated to include new Alexa features and functionality when they arrive in the Amazon Alexa app,” said Alfred Woo, principal product manager for Alexa Voice Services at Amazon, in a statement.

Each accessory maker has its own companion app. The same method works for the Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit. Once the user pairs a new headset with the smartphone for the first time, and finishes the one-time setup within the Alexa app, the headset will connect with the Alexa app and enables voice commands on the go.
 
Along with Amazon’s announcement, Qualcomm, also introduced the Smart Headset Reference Design for Amazon AVS, the first reference design qualified by Amazon specifically for headset devices. For developers, the reference design costs US$299.
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