Alexa 'Answer Update' Feature Will Get Back to You Later

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Spotted by Voicebox, the feature has started showing up on some Alexa-enabled devices in the US. But it doesn't appear to be working, according to a report in the Information on Monday.

Have you ever purchased something using just your voice with an Amazon Echo and the Alexa voice assistant?

With Amazon supporting Alexa with an "open skills" development kit, it's likely we'll see rapid advances in the range of in-car functions the system can provide.

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The report further suggests that the Answer Update skill can be activated with some simple steps. You can tell Alexa to fill your shopping cart with all the items you need, and get everything delivered to your doorstep if you have Prime Now.

A figure that is slightly more encouraging for Amazon is that 20 percent of those who bought something with their voice some a more broad engagement, asking things like "What are my deals?" and "Where is my stuff?" to tracker orders.

Even more concerning for Amazon, the vast majority of people (90 percent) who bought something using their voice only tried it once.

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Despite the sale of 50 million Alexa-abled devices, merely 2% of the buyers have made purchases with their own voices in 2018.

One of the sources stated that it is simply the matter of finding a way out of boosting people to continue purchasing via Alexa through data analysis, after which they could flourish the market quickly. (Hence the heavy slant towards home products, in which picking an exact item matters less than, say, a new TV, a specific type of phone charger, or a chef's knife.) At the end of the day, the best tool to do that - a computer or smartphone - is already in all of its customers' hands. In essence, Amazon is striving to push something that would earn more revenue for the company despite the fact that no one actually wants to use it.

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