Listen to the latest audio news in Voice: updates on Siri, Alexa and Google's virtual assistant and innovations and advances in voice recognition and natural language processing, aired on leading talk radio shows and premium podcasts.
A highlight from Alexa Print in Canada
"Hello hello, Terry here. Hope you're doing well. It's Thursday. And welcome back to the flash briefing. Today I want to tell you about something that was recently announced as well from the Amazon team. Very interesting. This is the ability to use your Lexi devices or your Lexi app for that matter to print out things. Now, this has been available in the United States for a while. But as of November 18th, Amazon announced the launch of a service called Lexi print in Canada and what this is is a way to print your lists, your recipes, games, educational content using voice commands. So this works with second generation echo devices or newer and a number of here's the technology terms. Gary, IPP enabled compatible printers. So that includes brands such as HP, brother, canon and epson. So here's how you figure it out. If your printer will work with this new Lexie print function, you simply say Lexi discover my printer. Make sure your printer is on. And if it has to be in any type of pairing mode, then make sure that it is on the pairing mode as well. You can also do the same thing through your Lexi app by going to adding devices. But essentially, the voice command is lexique discover my printer. And once you can do that, and if it pairs, successfully, then you can use it to print out those various things that I talked about. So as always, I'd love your feedback on this. If you've got this function and it's working for you, I'd love to hear how you are using it.
A highlight from In-call Video Effects for Alexa
"Hey there, Terry here. It is Wednesday and I've got a fun little bit of information for you today. On November 9th, Amazon actually introduced a new video calling feature for the echo show devices that uses in call video effects. So what does that mean? It means that when you are on a video call using your echo show or your Lexi app for that matter, you can turn on augmented reality effects and animated emoji reactions. So what you do is when you are on that call, you can tap on the on screen effects button and that will bring up the augmented reality effects and filters. Then you can use, or you can also tap the smiley face icon, and that will deliver short animated reactions, hearts, laugh, confetti, laughs, confetti, and so on. So there you go, if you haven't tried that, experiment a little bit with the echo Lexi video calling. And you might have a lot of fun with that. So there you go. Have fun. And
A highlight from myDurham 311 Skill
"Hello, Terry here. Hope you're doing well. It's Tuesday and I've got a really interesting skill that I want to tell you about today. If you are in the Ontario region or more specifically, if you are in the Durham region. And I hope I pronounced that right, because I'm not Ontario. This region launched the first of its kind smart home voice app in Canada. And I've always thought this is a really great use case for voice apps or for skills. Here is what the deal is all about. So there is a new skill called the my Durham three one one skill. And what it does is it allows people allows you to talk to Lexi and find out information about your region. So for example, elected officials, regional facilities, waste pickup, nearest bus stops, even when to expect the nearest transit bus. And so all you have to do is say Lexi open my Durham three one one and then you are set to go. So give it a try. If you're in that area for sure, give it a try. And like I said at the beginning, I think this is a fantastic use case. I would love to see lots of other government organizations and regions and whatever it is, just create these informational skills that then you can tap into to simply ask those questions that you're wondering about when it comes to getting services and goods in your particular area. I think it's a great great idea. So there you go, give it a shot, and if you've got any feedback for me about it, please feel free to let me know. Just go to Twitter and hit me up, doctor Terry Fisher, DR TRI FIS agar, and I'd love to hear more about your experience with it. All right, talk to you again tomorrow.
Best Buy Cyber Monday sale: Our favorite tech deals you can shop right now
"Well, hey there, Terry here. It is Monday and it's cyber Monday. So sales are still there to be had. By the way, if you've used my affiliate link for Black Friday sales, thanks so much. I just want to go through a couple of other sales today. Now, if you missed the Black Friday sales, don't worry because they are still going on. I'm not going to go through all those same sales today. Needless to say there are lots and lots of great deals on the echo devices, in particular, the echo dot and the echo are very greatly discounted. In fact, you get the echo dot for 35 bucks instead of 70 and it includes a smart color lightbulb. And the echo is 80 instead of a 130, and it also includes a smart lightbulb. Now let's get into some of the other deals as well. So if you are looking at getting some type of fire TV a device, then let me tell you about these. The fire TV stick light is 25 instead of 50. The fire TV stick is 30 instead of 60. The fire TV stick four K is 35 instead of 70. The fire TV stick four K max, which includes Wi-Fi 6 support is 15 instead of 75 and the fire TV cube is a hundred instead of a 150. Of course, all of these are controlled by Lexi. In addition, there are tons of
A highlight from Turn Off Announcements in Other Locations
"Hello, Terry here. Hope you're doing well. It is Sunday, and that means we've got another question from the community. This is a great one. This is sent in by lift. I hope I pronounce your name right. Here's the question. I'm a fairly experienced legacy product user. I have multiple devices and decided to get my mom and dad and echo dot and a fire stick. They're in a different province. So I thought it'd be fun for the kids to drop in on them. Anyway, we used the announcements a lot in our home and I could not figure out how to stop the announcements from going to their fire TV stick. I found out how to stop it from going to their echo dot, but the fire TV stick is stumping me. So the answer thank you very, very much to member in our community, as always, Pete helped to answer this. And Pete said, firstly, I would have created a separate account for them as they're in a physically separate location. And used Lexi calling rather than dropping. So that's what Pete suggests. And I think that does make a lot of sense. However, those preferences aside, in the Lexi app, devices page the little icon at the bottom of the home screen you'll see devices. And then you can select all devices. And then you can search for the fire TV, then you click on the communications option and you can toggle off the announcements there. And then the announcements will not be made over that particular device. And of course, you can do that for other devices as well. So I hope that's helpful to lots of people. It's a great question. Thank you. Thank you, Pete, really appreciate both the question and the answer. And I hope you're all doing well. Tomorrow I'll be back with some cyber Monday sales as well. So enjoy the rest
A highlight from Happy Chanukah 2021
"Hello hello, Terry Fisher here with your flash beeping for Saturday. As you know on Saturday, we like to cover different things that you can say to legacy and with starting early next week. I thought it would be a good opportunity to share some things that you can say to Lexi. So for those of you that celebrate, first of all, happy hanukah. And let's get right to it. You can say just that, Lexi, happy hanuka and she'll give you a quick greeting. You can also say Lexi spin the dreidel. You can say, tell me a Hanukkah joke. And here's what I think it's kind of fun. You can actually say Lexi sing me a Hanukkah song. And she's got you covered. So there you go a couple of fun fun things to get you in the mood for the holiday. Again, if you are celebrating hanukah, then happy hunk, all the best next week. And for those of you that don't well, check out some of these commands, particularly that last one. Lexi singing me Hanukkah because it's a lot of fun, and she's got a great tune. So there you go. Have fun and I will talk to you again tomorrow.
A highlight from Black Friday 2021 Deals
"Hey, hey, Terry here. Happy Black Friday. And you know what that means. There are tons of deals do we had on Amazon? And I want to take you through a whole bunch of these. As you may know, I have an affiliate for Amazon. And if you choose to use my affiliate link to purchasing these products, then hey, thanks so much for doing so. I do earn a small commission. But there's no charge to you whatsoever and the experience is exactly the same. You simply go to voice in Canada dot CA slash Amazon and it takes you to the Amazon page. Voice in Canada CA slash Amazon. Okay, let's get right to these deals, because there are a lot of them. All right, we're going to start with the echo show devices. As far as the echo show 5 goes, this is the smaller device. It's normally a hundred bucks, and it's on sale for 60. Now, with this device, and with a lot of the other devices, you'll find that when you go to that particular page, there is an option to purchase the device only, or you can choose with a free color smart bulb. I'd recommend you choose the free color smart bulb. And then, for example, in this case, if you do that, the price for the two of them together would normally be a $122, and it's still $60. So then you're looking at a 50% off deal. So that's pretty good. When we go to the echo show 8, you're going to find a similar deal so you're going to see that the price is normally a 170, and it's on for one O 5. But again, you have the choice of adding on the free color smart bulb, which typically would run you a $192 and you're getting it for a 105. The echo show ten, this is the one that previously was the flagship one, and it does move. This one for whatever reason is not on sale. So I wouldn't recommend buying this one at least not at this time when you can take advantage of some of the other deals. It's on for three 30. Let's move on to the echo show 15. This is the new flagship one. The flat screen one, I spoke about it a little while ago that you can put on your wall or on a stand. This one is three 29, 99, and you do have the option of purchasing it with a free color smart bulb, again, three 29 99, but you get a bulb with it. All right, moving along. The echo dot devices. The I should say the echo spherical devices. The smallest one being the echo dot. This one is on for 50% off. It's $35 instead of 70. And again, you do have the option of purchasing with a free color smart bulbs. That's a really good deal for 35 bucks. You get a smart bulb and the echo dot, which together normally retail for 92. The echo device the larger spherical device larger than the echo dot, but has the same physical appearance. This was normally one 30 and it's on for 80. And again, you have the option of adding in the free color smart bulb if you choose to do so. The echo flex is normally $35. It's on for 20. This is the one that you would plug into a socket and this one, unfortunately does not come with a free ball. It's already quite an inexpensive product for 20 bucks. You can have an echo device plugged into any socket that you want. And then we've got the echo audio, the echo auto, which is $30, normally 70. And so that's a good price if you want to get echo and echo device into your car. And here's an interesting one too. If you have been looking at echo buds, the earbuds with Lexi built in, then these are on sale as well. They're $90, normally a 155, and you can choose to get the one with the wired charging case or with the wireless charging case. They're normally a 180 and they're on for one 15. So there you go. Those are the echo products that are on sale. There are a lot more other products that are on sale, things like the fire TV stick. The fire TV stick four K, the fire TV stick four K max, and the fire TV cube all have really, really great prices as well. In addition, there are deals on the ring doorbells, and they are deals on the eero 6 and the irr pro 6 Wi-Fi mesh routers, which will then allow you to blanket your home in good Wi-Fi so you can use Lexie wherever you want. So you're going to find lots of other deals. Those are the ones that are most relevant to us, the Lexi users, the echo device users and there you go. Hopefully you'll take advantage of those. Let me know if you decide to get something. I'd love to hear what you get, particularly if it's something new that you haven't had before. And I'd love to hear your impression on you. Again, my affiliate link is voice in Canada dot CA slash Amazon, and that will take you directly to the Amazon website, but it will just be tagged with my referral code. So there you go. Voice in Canada. Thanks so much, enjoy your Black Friday, and I'll
A highlight from Enterprise conversation design best practice with Celene Osiecka, Senior Director of Conversation Design at 7.ai
"For VOX world. It is deep Grom. If you are in the world of conversation AI, those AI and you are looking for an automatic speech transcriber automatic speech recognition provider, then do check out deep gram. They do some amazing amazing work. They've got incredible deep learning technologies. The accuracy is very, very good. Over 90% in a lot of cases. They power companies actually all over the world. They power applications, everything for meat and room transcriptions. They've actually just released some new language models as well. So they're now support French French Canadian, which is how many conversations they want to go about my pathetic French speaking, which we might get into or not. Also increased support for Hindi and Spanish, the models have been updated to better support conversational AI applications that have released new models for voicemails earnings calls, a whole bunch of a whole bunch of stuff. So whatever your transcription needs, I'm sure with deep pump can help you out. So check out deep gram dot com forward slash vu X world if you are interested that is deep gram dot com forward slash vix world. Okay, on with the show, where we're going to be talking about designing enterprise grade conversational applications. Our guest today, Celine, osika is immensely experienced in the world of conversation design. There's often job descriptions that get put out there. I know Ben McCulloch who's a conversation designer. You may well be familiar with him. Always complains and minds about the fact that jobs that advertise for conversation designers always ask for like 7 years experience. And there's very few conversation designers. Just 7 years experience, because relatively speaking, as it's now become a well-known subset of UX design. I know there's been really designers for a long time over the decades John bloom and Kathy pearl and Lisa folks are in that. But as far as it's rise into popularity, it's relatively new. And so there's not actually that many people that have a tremendous amount of experience, but Celine does Celine is a senior director of conversation design at 24 7 AI. And welcome to VX world Celine. You're part of it. Yeah, great to be here. It's nice to have you. It's nice to have you. So yeah, I was just saying that conversation design is almost seems like it's really kind of like emerging now as a serious design practice. As I mentioned, it's been, it's existed for many, many years, you know, go back to the early 90s and people were designing conversations for IVRs with very rudimentary technologies. But now it seems like it's get into the point where it's finding its feet as a serious design practice. Yeah, it's true. Yeah, I remember not that long ago maybe three or four years ago when we were posting positions and things like that. We spent a good long time figuring out what do we call this thing, you know, because it's just it's not voice anymore, right? There's a lot of multi modal on the channel practices so we didn't want to nail it down just with. We played around with a lot of different titles. We had interaction designer in there for a while. And then, yeah, somewhere along the way we turned it into conversation. I think conversational designer, and then yeah, now it's kind of I think a standard network. It is called conversation design. So it's a lot easier to get people now that they at least know what we're talking about. But still you're right. The experience though is limited. You know, we can't get a lot of people that actually have experience in conversation design, but have different skill sets from other areas. You know, we have a speech pathologist that converted into a conversation designer on our team. And there's lots of UX folks that have converted over. We had a video game designer on our team that convert so they're all have the skill sets that can be conversation designers. But yeah, I mean, yeah, experience wise, you don't get a lot of people that have that experience for sure. It's interesting, isn't it? What are your observations on the sort of talent pool as it stands at the moment? Obviously, we've got people who are now beginning to be really enthusiastic and interesting in conversation design you mentioned a bunch of different roles that are coming into it. I've met playwrights who've now conversation designers and all kinds of people who kind of come into it. But there is a lot of UX designers also who are now looking at conversation design copyrights and UX writers and stuff like that who are kind of getting into it. What's your opinion or your insights into the current state of talent in the conversation design space as far as availability, level of talent, that kind of stuff? How would you describe the current availability, I suppose of talent and conversation design in a minute? Yeah, it's interesting, 'cause there's kind of two parts to it. There's the part that's innate to the person, you know, like, are they do they have good writing skills, communication skills, right? Because you need to be able to communicate in order to build a bot that can communicate. So there's a lot of things that are kind of inherent in a person that I think are kind of mandatory for the role. And then there's lots of learned things on top of that. We have a lot of best practices that we can teach and learn. And even the technology that we use can teach that too. So a lot of those things, I think you can definitely adapt and grow. But yeah, there is that kind of foundation that I think we look for that some people have and some people don't, where then can they think logically through a flow?
A highlight from Happy American Thanksgiving 2021
"Well, hey there, it's Terry Fisher here. Hope you're doing well. I want to take this moment. I know it's the American Thanksgiving, but I want to say, thank you to everybody that has listened to the slash briefing. Even one time, I really appreciate the support. So tall you Canadians out there. Thank you so much. We do have a lot of U.S. listeners as well and to all of you. Thank you as well for all of your support. And do you in particular Happy Thanksgiving? Just for a little fun, you can definitely get Lexi into the celebrations and you can simply say Lexi, Happy Thanksgiving and see what she says. And there you go. I'll keep this one short and sweet today. All the best to everyone for a wonderful weekend. And again, my sincere thanks for all of your support. Over the years. And we'll continue to keep this going. All right. One more thing, as it is, Black Friday, tomorrow, stay tuned for the flash briefing tomorrow while I will highlight some of the best deals on Amazon at this time. So there you go, talk to you then.
A highlight from TVS with Scot Westwater
"That is being released on The Voice in Canada podcast. By the way, if you don't know where to find that just go to voice in Canada C 8 and you will see a link along the top menu bar that brings you to the different voice casts, which includes this slash briefing and the podcast. On the podcast, we have Scott westwater. He's the CCO of pragmatic digital. He is an expert when it comes to strategy around a voice app skills, actions, et cetera, marketing. He's actually written a book about this. And when you hear the podcast, you will hear just the sense that he has of the state of the voice industry. And so if you have a voice app or you're wondering how to create one or if you're just interested in how to market something like this, you definitely want to check out this podcast. This is Scott westwater. It was a recording of the voice loans to show that he did with myself. And lots of great stuff in there. It's got a great guy and I know that you'll get a ton of this. Head on
A highlight from The Voicefluencer Show with Scot Westwater
"So if you're going to go that route, it's still very much education and use cases and things like that. But I think there's certainly no shortage of opportunity if you wanted to take the initiative to start building something yourself. Interesting. You touched on a lot there. One of the things that I find quite intriguing is the way that you say that the questions that you're getting have become different. Do you find that you're doing less convincing of people that voices the next big thing and now that they're a better understanding of that, now they are interested in the application of it or I don't know what the questions that you're getting and how are you having those conversations with people first approach you? So it's definitely gone away from, I don't even know what the hell this voice thing and you're talking about is is a voice acting as a voiceovers. You know, IVRs, there's so many, especially in those early days. There is a lot of confusion over the term. I think generally what we're seeing is there isn't awareness. And so people are especially in the marketing community. People are aware that it exists. They're still very in degrees of belief that it is the next big thing with in search or whatever. But I think you definitely have seen that shift go from, what are you even talking about? Again, to how will this impact my business? Where can I use it right now in a meaningful way? Much like what Mark talked about, it's building for the now and for the future, we can't just go through and say, well, in 5 years, this is where it's going to be. They actually want to see an ROI 6 months after it launches. They wanted us actually see something where it's moving the needle for their business. And because of the whole host of factors that are out of our control, there's still a lot of question marks. And quite frankly, I don't think a lot of the larger consulting firms are actually super well versed in it. So they're still talking more about chat bots and chat experiences. So I think generally speaking, there's still a lot of work to be done on just AI, education in general, figuring out where it can best benefit the business. And it could be something as simple as your CRM program and having AI help with subject lines and versions and things like that. All the way through prospecting and selling. There's a lot of those kinds of things. But really looking at voice and AI as how does this mean? How is this going to move the needle for our organization in a meaningful way? Sure. Sure. I don't know if you saw this tweet by brayden, reem the CEO of voice flow. But he tweeted out and said, this may have been a little while ago, but he said, it looks like by the end of the year, they're going to have ten to 15 of the fortune 100 companies using voice flow, which is which is great from just, you know, when I think about that just at face value, but the implication of that where we've got ten to 15 companies now investing in voice in some way or another, does that surprise you or is that kind of the sense that those numbers where you think the market is at or love to hear your comments on that? I mean, it's interesting. So I just know from a lot of conversations that I can't really get into much of that there are a lot of initiatives going on at a lot of organizations. Big and medium sized. I think so I'm not surprised, but I think the bigger challenge that we're seeing is a lot of it is still R and D, a lot of it's still very experimental. Not fully marketed support. So like, you know, we're not driving traffic. We're not really getting the right people there. We're not iterating and evolving it, making it part of the business unit. It's still in a lot of cases treated as a separate silo and all right, let's see what happens if we do this voice thing. So I'm not surprised that ten or 15 large, fortune 100s are investing. I think it would be really interesting to hear the names of all of the brands and organizations that are actually investing. That would be interesting. Again, because of conversations I've had and just anecdotal conversations with other folks in the industry, a lot of the bigger players have initiatives. A lot of times they just haven't talked about it publicly. So yeah, they're usually kind of on the forefront least, at least exploring what's going on with the technology. Yeah. And like point in case McDonald's. And so like McDonald's here in the states is actually done a pilot on an AI automated voice drive-through system. And my town actually the one that's less than a mile from my house happens to be one of the ones that they put it in. Oh well, first to try it out. So we actually very to try and early on. When we heard it was there. And we're like, all right, let's go try it out. And it was definitely had some rough edges. And you can definitely tell that they were trying things out. And at that point, there were still human interventions happening. More recently, I think it was a couple of months ago. We went back. And it's gotten better. But it's still, you know, probably not ready for prime time yet. I know. I know McDonald's is actually working with IBM to scale and bring it out to more markets. So again, I think there's a lot of trial and error, a lot of learning, which is great. I think we just need to get those initial organizations over the hump, so it's more of a mass play. And so that the really trying to solve their business challenges and their consumer needs. And then as more people start doing it, it's going to become second nature. It's like what Susan always says. Early on in her career, she had to convince someone at a very well known brand that you have to put the website on the packaging. In fact, she basically had to justify the Internet and putting a URL on it because no one knew what a URL was. It's the same kind of thing with voice right now. We're still in a lot of the consumer education. We still have to let them know that it exists. We have to tell them why they want to use it and how it's going to make their lives easier.
Fire TV 4-Series Announced
"And today I want to tell you about another new product in the new line of TVs that Amazon has put out. If you listened yesterday to the flash briefing, you know that I talked about the fire TV Omni series, which has hands free voice control. Meaning you actually don't even need a remote. You just talk to the TV. The difference is, of course, with those TVs that require remote. And that is where the Amazon fire TV four series comes in. So what is this? It is a four K ultra high def resolution TV. It's got support for HDR ten and HLG. So that's got great picture quality. And it includes a 43 inch, a 50 inch and a 55 inch model size in that lineup. Of course, it's got a lot of the same Lexi features that you have come to expect. But the difference between the fire TV four series and the fire TV Omni series, again, is that the fire TV four requires the remote, which you can speak to and control XE. And of course, it comes with that. Whereas the Omni one does not even require the remote. You just simply speak to the TV. Now, again, as I mentioned, I am an affiliate for Amazon, and if you choose to use my link then, thank you so much. If you want to check out these TVs, the fire TV four series, you just go to voice in Canada dot CA slash fire TV four. The number four, fire TV four. If you want to check out the Omni series, you go to voice in Canada, dot CA slash fire TV Omni. And that will take you to those TVs. Now, the other thing I just want to mention briefly is the pricing of these. Yesterday I talked about the Omni pricing. But the fire TV four series pricing, the 43 inch is $470. The 50 inch is normally 600, but there is an introductory price right now, which is reflected if you're checking out, which is 460 or 23% off. And then the 55 inch TV is 660. The other thing I forgot to mention is with regards to the fire TV Omni series, the 50 inch also has an introductory sale price. And so normally that one is 650, but the introductory price is 510 or 23% off again reflected at
Fire TV Omni Series Announced
"Week, I want to tell you about a new line of products that Amazon has announced. And this is the all new fire TV family. Today I want to focus on their flagship series, which is actually called the Amazon fire TV Omni series. And by the way, if you do want to look at these, I do an affiliate link, you just go to voice in Canada dot CA slash fire TV Omni. Fire TV OMI. So let me tell you about this. Here are some of the key features that this brand new TV series has. First of all, of course, it is Lexi hands free controlled. It's got four K ultra high definition and Dolby digital plus. What does that mean? Okay, so first of all, with regards to Lexi, the TV itself has far field technology built into it, meaning that it can hear you from across the room, just like any other Amazon echo device. What that means is that you can now use your voice to experience TV, but also use a device for music for gaming and a whole bunch of other things that we can get into. You can simply ask Lexie to tune into your favorite show. And she will jump right into the program you're looking for, so that means you don't have to remember a channel. You don't have to remember what streaming, service you don't remember what input device you're using. You can also use your voice to control playback. Closed captions, brightness, manage your TV, soundboard volume, switch inputs, and there's so much more. And of course, you can actually set up routines as well. So for example, you could say Lexi kick off my day and the TV and smart lights can turn on. Lexi can share the weather, for example, can maybe read you your calendar, and then it can just tune in to the news on your buyer TV Omni series TV. The other thing that it does, it allows you to easily connect with other echo devices in your room if you want to do that. So you can create a incredibly high fidelity audio experience with stereo sound as well. There are some other smart features that have been built into this. You can example say Lexi play something and she will start playing you something from your favorite streaming service. You can also say Lexi play TikTok and Lexi is now an integration with TikTok. And it has picture in picture where you can use the TV to view what is going on, for example, at your ring smart doorbell and camera while you're watching TV and of course, you can control that with your voice. And a really nice aspect, of course, is the ability to share video communication through lexy calling and zoom and you can do that by your voice as well. So this TV, this particular TV, the Omni series four K, ultra high def smart TVs come in a whole bunch of sizes, 43 inch 15, 55, 65 inch and 75 inch. I'll just run through those prices for you quickly. The 43 inch is $520, the 50 inch is 650, the 55 inch is 710, the 65 inch is 1050 and the 75 inch is 1400. And again, you can check all of these out at voice in Canada dot CA slash fire TV
How to Use a Stereo Pair of Speakers With Amazoon Echo
"As you may recall last week, we covered two of the three different scenarios of how you can combine your echo devices to create some more immersive audio when it comes to your echo speakers. And I want to cover that third option today. The way you would set this up, again, you go into your Lexi app. You click on devices. You click on the plus sign in the upper right corner, then you click uncombined speakers. And the third option that we're talking about today is, of course, a stereo pair slash subwoofer as the Amazon team calls it in the options. This allows you to pair two speakers for stereo and or add a subwoofer for deeper base. So what you do is you click on that option, you then can select up to two speakers and a subwoofer. All those speakers have to be online on the same network and in the same room for that to work. Once you click on that, then you click next in the upper right corner. You then choose. And this is pretty cool. You then choose which of those speakers you want to be the left channel and which of those speakers you want to be. The right channel. And then when you do that, you click next and then you give it a name. So this group of speakers will have a name. That way, when you asked for music, you can use the name of that group to specify that it be played on that group of speakers. You can choose one of the names that are suggested, or you can create a customized name, then you click save, and then you are essentially good to go and that. How you do it? That's a stereo pair with or without a.
Smart Bathrooms: Are They a Smart Decision?
"You told me the other day the your bathroom. You're what do you call the restroom. Cova i have no my bathroom. Nassar bathroom exists. Yes yes right well in your master bathroom yes you've made it super smalls from my understanding. I may have got a little bit farther than i should have. Legal march japanese toilet I do japanese. It's a it's a canadian made. It's called lovie The toilet as you approach it. The seat will open no way allies. Swear it has remote control as a built-in Function which you heat of the heat of the water that speeds up your little touchy Control the intensity of the headwaters so you get a good cleaning it goes battled for all the crevices and you can also control the The extension and the position. that's the For the meal cleaning. Then there's the female cleaning hop today it's Then there's A fan that pulls out the air so that when you're doing something a little bit more odorous gets rid of that for us. It doesn't really comes with. Does that airlock does it. Yeah it's eco-friendly. When you flush it it does it. Expose water in very nicely. Keeps very little water What else does it have. A heated seat so keeps you nice and toasty nice. Yeah that's nice always good. You can control the heat of the seat as well and of course the water and everything else And that's about all that's all the toilet does. Oh that sounds amazing. Thing hang on more. Did i mention the shower. That is controlled by voice so mohan Which is very famous. Zooming of you know taps a system. Could you by mowing the letter. You and it's a whole shower systems in my shower. All you have got the rain shower thing and the handled telephone handle type thing. And i've got a little keypad like little keypad on there. And that keypad connects via wifi network. And there's an alexa skill for that and I can literally say Start my shower. Preset to whatever i do and it will turn on the right thing. It'll get the temperature and it keeps it at the proper temperature of the entire
Use Alexa to Set Reminders for your To Do List
"Have you ever had one of those mornings where you wake up and you are just your mind is preoccupied with all the things that you need to do? And suddenly it can help to write those things down and get them on to a to do list. Well, here's an idea for you. You can use Lexie to take some of that. Some of that stuff off your mind off your plate. Basically use the remind me feature if you say Lexi remind me to send an email to my boss at ten a.m. she will do that. And the key thing here is you can actually schedule out your to do list by using the reminders and specifying times. Lexi remind me to phone my dad at one p.m., et cetera and you can set that all up in the morning as you're getting ready and then Lexie will give you those reminders as the day
What Should I Wear Today? Let Alexa Decide.
"Have you found that you were wearing the same thing over and over and over again? Well, Lexi can come to your rescue. I don't know if you know this, but Lexi is there to provide some fashion inspiration on a daily basis. You can simply say Lexi, what should I wear today? NG will give you a different idea depending on when you ask, meaning she does have a number of responses to this. I tried it a couple of times. I did get a number of different responses. So I'm not quite sure how many ideas she has, but I suspect she has quite a few. So if you're wondering what to wear today, just say it to Lexi, Lexi, what should I wear today? And she will let you know. And also, interesting fact, one of the statements that I got from her had a Canadian reference in it as well. Her answers are based on our location. So that's kind of interesting
National Disability Strategy Pledges to Make Homes More Accessible
"Our first story today comes to us from. At today it's titled national disability strategy pledges to make homes more accessible and upgrade job support stirs written by sarah srb and it's about a new program in the uk trying to make housing more accessible commuting more accessible and have better job prospects for individuals with disabilities story talks about the united kingdom's new national disability strategy. This is supported by one point. Six billion pounds of funding and it's focused on improving inclusion in the workplace tackling the disability employment gap and making sure children with special needs and disabilities are at the heart of the strategy. Some of the things that it seeks to do is first of all introduce workforce reporting for businesses and more than two hundred and fifty staff on the number of individuals with disabilities to encourage a more inclusive kind of workplace also launching a new online advice hub available to both the individuals with disability as well as the employer and this is there to provide information and advice on disability discrimination in the workplace and also teach them about flexible work environments individuals rights and the employer's obligations around reasonable adjustments. Or what we call here in the states reasonable accommodations. One thing that i really did like about the story is that it all started off with the united kingdom disability survey and this over fourteen thousand respondents. Now it doesn't really say anything about who the respondents were. But from what i get from the story is it's individuals with disabilities living in the uk. So basically they ask. What are the barriers the you have. What are the things we can do to help you. Because as many folks no assistive technology is a wonderful thing. But if it's not used in the right place for the right reason at the right time is not that great so they really actually reached out to the people and tried to make sure that they can actually get what the folks needed in their hands at the right time
FlickType Pulling iPhone Keyboard App After Continued Rejection Issues
"We're talking about the flick type keyboard right. This is the flicked tight keyboard. Which a lot of people use sean. You know mortar better than i because he used this. You loved it. Yep absolutely so basically allows you to just tap the screen where you think the letter would be. You don't need to find time you're moving your finger around waiting to voice over to say s or whatever it may be you simply tap where you should be on standard quirky keyboard and guesses what you're trying to type and the magic behind is the guests is almost no perfect every time it's so quick to type Can't see the screen. Honestly i use it for so many things and saves me so much time. And i am gutted by this Well at mosman looking at the article from the verge forest this week and mark. What's the problem. Why why is it going away. Because that's what seems to be happening. Well they've had some history where apple been rejecting the app because it requires what they call full access to the device itself. Now this is something that apple has allowed in the past. And there's not a bit an issue but It's been rejected. A couple applets rejected a couple of weeks ago and they've tried reaching out to apple this nine times a week with no success. They feel apple's ignoring their attempts to contact them. And it's something that they've argued in the past and actually got passed at apple said he had no problem. You know. we've we've understand your clarification we're gonna let through. But now after several rejections over the exact same thing they just kind of giving up. They sit apple's just not responding to them and they feel that assist final straw there. They've been this developer. Been pretty vocal about other issues. They've had You know as voice over user. That had a lot of problems in the past with different apps and different temps and they're just tired of the process The the one thing they did notice that the apple watch version is not really going away that will exist In the flick type added self so if you have that you will be able to continue to use that on the apple watch is just. They're not gonna continue putting it out on the devices themselves. So that means that they're just gonna kinda whittle away when it's no longer no longer valid.
Alexa Custom Assistant Expands
"I've got one final announcement from the Lexi live event. And this is all about the Lexi custom assistance. I don't know if you are aware of this but relatively recently Amazon announced the ability for brands to create their own custom assistant but using all the technology that has already built through Amazon and Lexi. So this means that a brand pick your favorite brand potentially could create their own unique wake word relevant to their brand. They could have their own voice their own personality their own capabilities. So it really becomes like a custom voice assistant but it is leveraging all of the infrastructure and the framework that Amazon has put in place with Lexi. So I do think we are going to be seeing more and more of this in the future. We're going to hear about brands having their own custom voice assistant and there's a good chance that it will be built on top of the Lexi infrastructure. So stay tuned for example of that. If you hear of any examples of that please into my way I'd love to highlight them for everybody so we can get a sense of what those are like. And I think
Voice Interoperability Initiative Expands
"Right Terry here and I've got two more announcements from the Lexi live event a couple weeks ago. Today and tomorrow we'll cover those. The first one today is about the voice interoperability initiative. So the VII program. If you're not familiar with that that is a program that is committed to providing users us with the choice and flexibility on assistance that they interact with to choose what you want to be interacting with in terms of which assistant. So it's very interesting because there's over 90 different members now that are working towards this vision. And some of these members of the initiative include of course Amazon but also Facebook Intel Sonos Garmin and other sort of major brands. So this is very interesting. It's going to mean that there's more options on devices for which assistant you want to speak with. And that's good for everybody as far as I'm concerned. So there you go. They continue to expand that and I think
Alexa Conversations Now in Canada
"Is the latest announcement from Lexie live. And this one is specific to Canada, which is great. You may have heard of something called off Lexi conversations, Alexa conversations. And this is a very Advanced way that developers can design their skills to have more natural-sounding conversation with Lexi conversations. Basically is a deep learning based approach to dialogue management. And again, it enables the developers to create natural human like voice experience so you can change your mind on things. So, a good example is, you know, somebody's ordering a pizza and they change their mind in the middle of the order, you know, make that a large instead of a medium Lexi's able to respond to that. And there are so many other aspects to this, that would actually be a little bit too long to get into just in the short flash briefing. But the point of this particular flash briefing is to let you know that this technology Lexi conversations has Been expanded now to include all English locales, and of course that includes Canada. It wasn't available here previously. So this is very exciting. We are going to be seeing more and more skills that allow this natural conversation to have with Lexi. So I will keep you updated when I become aware of specific skills that incorporate this month, later technology of natural conversations, and I look forward to trying that out
Customized Pronunciations are coming to Alexa
"To get back to you. A few more features at Amazon announced recently that are coming down the pipe and one of these is called customized pronunciations home. So this is very interesting because the idea behind this is that it allows developers to add custom pronunciations for rare words to their skills and things that you're developing with Lexi. So you've ever listened to a skill or Lexie saying something and she's not quite pronouncing a word, right? This will allow developers to correct that. So, you know, it's not a huge deal in terms of you know, it's not an earth-shattering feature, but I think it is an important part of making Lexi sound more natural and overall improving the experience. So I'm excited to see that and more and more. We're going to see better pronunciation or less and less. We're going to see less errors. So I think that's
How Does the Envision App Help the Visually Impared Read?
"Start with the envision app and you mentioned this a little bit. But i want to dig a little bit deeper. What all can the app do. So the app is supposedly. The app is available on both ios and android and our teams from the beginning was to always make envision as accessible as possible as many people as possible and so we are one of the very few applications in the space that are available on both android. What the app does so. I think the app does a whole bunch of things but what does really well is eating text. And when i say reading texts i mean leading text of any surface you can imagine could be on product could be on a display at a train station could be opposed to be a document. Envision is able to lead based in more than sixty different languages of pretty much any surface that you can throw at it right back from reading from any surface and vision is also able to the text trump. eds from word files from from textiles files and it also able to export the extra reading ambition in all these different formats as well to read in texas a huge. Plus that envision has and from we have other functionality. Such as being able to teach envision faces of your friends or family members and being able to recognize them. You can teach envision or you can ask invasion discomfort objects around you and vision can describe a scene after picture and also another very interesting. Use that thing that you that users can do. Vision is shared images from outside the envision app within vision and have envisioned that for you as well as you get a memo and what's out for example if you see an image trigger and it doesn't have any x. Which is a bad thing. Everyone should put on images and put and if you see that and if you wanted to leave that stuff you could go ahead and use ambition to do it. And like i mentioned available on ios and android android with available on android six in a boss which makes it an extremely accessible app for people across the
Switch From Alexa to Phone With This New App
"Is the latest announcement off. Lexi live again. And this one is a feature that's called send to phone. So what does this do? Well, this allows people customers us to start an experience on Alexi device and then continue it on a mobile phone. So this will also tap into some of the technology known as quick links and the send to phone feature will allow observers to build the ambient experiences that make them useful on both, the Lexi Echo devices or Alexa enabled device and your mobile phone at the same time. So it the idea is Jacob seen this whether you're starting an experience at home and then leaving the house, you can just carry that on on to your mobile phone so this will be a great for that type of use case and I look forward to keeping updated on when we schedule. To see that in action in the real
What is Food Skill API?
"Right, Terry here and here's your latest update with regards to the Lexi live. There's so much that came out of this event. I've been doing this for a little while and I saw a few more updates to tell you. Anyway, this one is all about offering food through your Alexa devices. This is a new feature that again, it was just announced and it allows developers to help enable restaurants to be able to quickly create high-quality food delivery and pickup experiences all through voice. It's the same sort of experience that people are starting to have with music and smart home devices. And this this particular technology is called their food skill API and again, it's going to help with the development and enable high accuracy of customer experiences for food delivery ordering Etc. So, once again, I'll keep you updated on when this comes to Canada, and it's great. Lots of functionality being built into Lexi and in the next, you know, in the upcoming months.
Request Songs on the Radio With Alexa
"Is a very very interesting feature that Amazon just announced with Lexi life. This is called the wrong song requests kill component. And this is the statement that that Amazon has put out about this. This feature will allow radio DJs to engage with listeners by taking song requests and dedications through Lexi. As an example, they say that iHeartRadio will support this feature and actually saw a demo, this whole literally. What happens is a person can speak to Lexi request a song dedicated to someone and then the DJ on the other end will get that list of requests that are coming in. May be able to play songs and this all happens through Lexi. I am very interested to see how this will actually play out. Once we have this feature, well, baked into the skill or we can act The experienced it but it's very fascinating to me because it opens up this whole new world of interactive voice technology with a brand with us. In this case a radio DJ but it could be other brands that are using these features. So I'm very sad to see where this goes in the future. For now it's called the song requests kill component and home. Again, this is available to developers right now to start implementing in their skills. So I will do my best to keep you updated on this as I learn new aspects about this. But I think this is a very exciting one.
Facebook Is Working on a Wearable AR Wrist Device
"I have a story called. Facebook gives up on mine reading headsets. Too focused on wrist worn devices from screen rant. Written by alan truly and this story is about facebook's work with a abc or a brain computer interface now. I don't use facebook. i haven't for quite a few years. Having kind of got off social media. Probably six or seven years ago somewhere in there. But i found this really important because basically as you may or may not know. Facebook bought the virtual reality headset company. Oculus so they're looking for different ways to be able to control the oculus. Instead of the weird kind of hand motions. You might have to do or weird ways you have to type in the air us a little controllers to do stuff. They're looking for new ways to control it so they started all this research and development in a brain computer interface. They did make some really good advances in fact even says that they were able to assist individuals who could no longer speak. Basically use a list of about fifty words and speak at a rate of over fifteen words per minute using just their brain so not having to use as or any sort of muscle movement or anything like that. All that they were using was just thinking the word and boom it popped right up at about a rate of fifteen words per minute does say while. That's really great for assistive technologies. That's nowhere as fast as normal. You know kind of hand joystick. Or whatever interface they were already using could go so they kind of scrapped the project at least for facebook and oculus but they did make that brain control interface software completely open source so that other folks could use it and maybe for assistive technology. It should be noted though that in order to make this work it required the electrodes implanted in the brain. That was the other thing. Facebook didn't really want to do. They didn't want to have to deal with the actual implants. They wanted something wearable and not quite as invasive and. I can't really truly say that. I blame them. So they moved onto a wrist band type controller and his wrist worn kind of controller would involve detecting motor neurons in the wrist now says the apple recently announced a similar technology in watch. Os eight now. This allows you to use assistive touch to control your apple watch by using finger motions with the hand on the risks that the watch is worn so basically if you make a fist or take your thumb and forefinger and pinch you can control some of the things on your apple watch.
Clubhouse Opens Its Doors
"Clubhouse Audio chat rooms now open to everybody who no matter who you are wherever you are as long as you're an iphone android phone and you're happy to give your phone number then you can join clubhouse and be part of the conversation for last night. I was learning how to be a better woman on clubhouse yes. I was listening to that room. That was interesting. I'll be honest doesn't allow sites that mark bill. That's the point is that there's so many weird rooms in the truman floss. Weird all right. Hey listen you're getting a minded sexist today even go there okay. No i mean it's just there's so many we make money through bitcoin and you know how to monetize and youtube tons of this stuff right and it's just like like it. You know now. I just seems that so much of it now. As that sort of thing i it turns me off to it. So there's some great if you got some friends on there and getting a jack. It's great but i see so much when i look through that hallway. See so many of those crypto currency and whatever else and is all seems a little bit to me. I like yesterday. Scottish mark was the future club. I think it's going to. It's going to let you know what i understand. It's on it's on a steady decline since it was first kind of availed to the world even though it is now open to more and more people I think it's because there's a lot of other services out there that are trying to compete with it and doing a pretty good job as fireside is a new one that launched. The people have been trying to get me on board with Not it's not the same idea similar very similar concept to clubhouse I'm not sure but accessibility on there. Aga back on that but It's just. I don't know. I think that you know it'll have its nation and people will continue with it until something shiny and bright comes along. That's much better. I mean success was done to the pandemic. let's be honest. i mean i would have been as popular. Had the pandemic not come along. I'm not so sure. I hear that all the time either. Something's felt because of the pandemic as a been a success because of the pandemic. I don't buy that. I think it was because certain. Celebrities came onto that platform. It sounds like we're being harsh about clubhouse but the fact of the matter reach there's always honeymoon period for any service or app where everyone is new. Everyone jumps on it then after a while. You know you think okay sort of done with that and people start to drift away. And i think the honeymoon period
Amazon Alexa Gets New Voices, Including Actors Melissa McCarthy and Samuel L. Jackson
"This month. Alexa is going to sound a little bit. Different on july fifteenth the tech giant rolled out an update to its digital voice assistant to include a second voice option. As you know amazon's assistant typically has like a feminine sounding voice with this update. You can change that to a more masculine voice setting this all up his quite simple. You just say the assistant's name followed by quote. Change your voice and quote but that's not all there's an additional wake word you can use in place of alexa. That new word is ziggy Basically it works the same way instead of saying the primary name of amazon's digital assistant You can say ziggy instead. If you're a fan of gigi and you've never tried to swap out the wake word and you kind of want to try it out. Anyway you have some other choices to You can use amazon. You can use echo or you can use computer And the way to do this is really simple. Just like with the change. Your voice option. You can make a query to the assistant and say change the wake word to whatever you want Another way to do this too is open up the app for the voice assistant go to the menu. Select your settings than device settings. Then you go to the device that you want to update with this new wake word and then you choose the when you want and that's it now if you don't want either of these options for voices you can actually add a little bit of celebrity flare After introducing an option awhile. Back to add actor. Samuel jackson's voice to queries amazon is much similar offerings featuring actress melissa mccarthy an nba legend shaquille. O'neal so the way it works is you kind of ask them directly as you would amazon's digital assistance. You might say hey shack. Tell me about the weather. Hey samuel Tell me about the news today. And it works exactly the same way and they will read everything in
Amazon Announce APL Widgets
"Keeping with some of the highlights from Amazon, a l e x, a live last week, I want to bring your attention a couple of the other features and will be doing this over the next week or so some of the interesting features. So this is something that we're going to be seeing more and more of going forward and this refers to a PL, widgets m, a p l stands for the like c a l e x, a present, a presentation language and what these widgets are. They are available to customers later on this year and it's a way for us customers or consumers to interact with content from the home screen of the echo devices. Obviously with screens so that means that we will be able to visit a widget gallery to find an ad widget to the favorites panel, on the home screen. And as of now, with developers can start to build these features into their skills wage So, look for that. It's going to be a great way. I think for us as consumers to discover other features about skills and other levels of functionality, that can be brought to the devices wage through the developers. So that's the APO widgets and that is something that Amazon just announced. I'm excited to see where this goes.
Why Marketing & Dev Need Each Other With Jennie Larsen
"Were them. Simplify is yeah and what you guys do in about. Your older developments simplified is a full development company. The thing they do most is custom development fast product apps processes back in so they do custom coding and they do a lot of websites as well. But not so much wordpress sites or wicks type sites. These are sites where people need something very specific or they want a very specific customer journey or something interactive that you have to have custom coding written for and so i actually approached. My brother is one of the owners. He's owners with two other people. And i approached him and said you know it just makes sense to me that you guys would offer marketing solutions. Because you're a developer. Usually if someone is getting a product developed they actually did take that product to the market and so that kind of how that whole journey started. And i was about four years ago and since then we've just become a real powerhouse team between marketing and development. We've realized i brought in marketing. Customers that needed development and development has brought in customers that needed marketing. And so we've actually created this really cool powerhouse team. Between the two companies we used to just be development simplified now. We have marketing simplified. They are two separate companies but working under the same. We work in the same office. We have two offices that we have two teams and yes so it was a four year journey. We just the benefit to that has just been massive in. It's just the development beads. The marketing the marketing deeds development end the customers just really benefit from that relationship.
What's New With the Alexa Echo-System 2021
"I want to give you a little bit of an update on the status of the Lexi ecosystem. If you will, as you know it was recently a l e x a live. And as I mentioned previously in the flash briefing, I'm going to kind of do a deep dive into all the different things that were discussed and one of those is an update on all the different stats that Amazon put up with regards to Lexi and the way it goes. So, here we go. I'm going to run through some of the key stats for you. So currently, there are hundreds of millions of Lexi enabled devices out there and customers. That means you and I spoke with, with Lexy billions of times every week. There are now more than 900,000 developers, that are there that are registered developers, and there are more than a hundred thirty thousand off these skills. There are hundreds of built-in products. There are currently more than 140000 Smart Home Products that can be controlled with Lexi, customers have connected more than a hundred years. I'm more than a hundred million smart home devices to Lexi and they're continuing to connect and millions of new devices. Everyone, these numbers are staggering. That's why I'm kind of laughing here. The numbers off of customers that are engaging with skills is growing at 40% year-over-year and some of the strongest categories are music audio games. So it's interesting. I think that I'm engaging more and more with skills. And do you know, if you are to, I'll give you two more little stats here before I sign off today, Lexi's helping to generate billions of dollars for the developers and the device maker community. So it's has a big economic impact as well and the developer revenue from in skilled, purchasing has more than doubled year-over-year. Now, if you're not sure what in skilled purchasing is that wouldn't totally surprise me because it has not been available in Canada until now.
Alexa Live 2021 is Today
"Is a big day in a l e x, a world and Lexie world. It is I mean I don't know how many times gonna have to say the word. It is Lexi like 5 today, Wednesday, July 21st. It starts at 9 a.m. Pacific. I spoke about this a little bit of week ago. What is Lexi live? It is an interactive virtual event for Galaxy skillbuilders, Device, makers, startups, and Business Leaders. Eager to learn more about the future of ambient Computing and voice technology. This happens today, it goes on for a long hours. It's basically think of it as an online free conference all about Lexie learning how to optimize it, learning how to take advantage of the technology and just a lot of fun job specs to it as well. So if you are interested in Lexi and I'm assuming you are cuz you here listening to this. Definitely, definitely check this out. Just simply search Lexi. While use the real word, a l e x, a live. And and you'll find it and you'll find the registration button and you will be good to go. Remember it starts at 9. A.m. Pacific
Setting Monthly and Annual Reminders With Alexa
"Been diving into some more of the functionality of the Lexi app and in doing. So I actually discovered some more functionality of Lexi herself and with regards to reminders, you may know that you can set reminders by just simply saying that set a reminder for whatever. And then Lexie will ask you when you can actually set reminders now, for monthly and yearly recurring events. So for example, you could say Lexi remind me to pay my rent on the first of every month and she will do that, or you could say, Lexi remind me, my anniversary is wage. Fill in the blank, you know, on a yearly basis and she can do that as well. So, have some fun with reminders. I think it's a really, really great function and hopefully it'll help us to not forget as many of those crucial dates,