Amazon has unveiled an array of Alexa-powered gizmos, some of which compete with Apple’s AirPods and HomePod, and others of which are just absurd, like an Alexa-powered smart oven, glasses, and even a ring.
Bloomberg has revealed that Amazon pays people to listen to a subset of Alexa recordings for the purpose of improving the technology. Do you trust Amazon with recordings of everything you say within an Echo’s earshot?
If you use Apple Music but prefer Amazon’s Alexa-based smart speakers to Apple’s HomePod, good news! Apple Music is now available on Alexa once you install the Apple Music skill, at least in the US.
Not every HomePod owner is a music addict, and even those who are will likely want their speakers to do other stuff. Julio Ojeda-Zapata has explored ways to tap the HomePod and Siri for information consumption, personal management, and other uses. For context, he compares the HomePod’s capabilities and Siri performance to equivalent features in competing Amazon Echo and Google Home smart speakers.
Rich Mogull shares the lessons he’s learned over a decade of home automation and how the new “Take Control of Apple Home Automation” book compresses many of them into a neat package.