Amazon's Alexa App Gains 'Hands-Free' Voice Activation Feature

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Amazon is making it possible to use Alexa "hands free" from within its Alexa mobile app for iOS, reports TechCrunch.


Up until now, you had to tap the blue Alexa button at the bottom of the screen before you could issue a voice command.

After updating the app, users will be able to simply speak to Alexa to make lists, control smart home devices, and more, without having to touch their iPhone.

While Amazon calls it "hands free," it's not like you'll be able to invoke the company's digital voice assistant if your phone is locked or when you're in another app.

What users will be able to do, however, is ask Siri to open the Amazon Alexa app, and then they can start using the new hands-free experience from there.

After updating the app, users will be presented with the option to enable the hands-free detection and can then begin to use the feature. According to TechCrunch, a setting is also being made available that will allow users to turn the feature off at any time.

Amazon says the feature is rolling out over the next several days to users worldwide on both iOS and Android.

Tags: Amazon, Alexa

Top Rated Comments

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4 weeks ago
Another nail in the coffin of Siri
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
4 weeks ago


It would be nice to swap out Siri for Alexa. Siri is decent for basic tasks but Alexas is a couple levels ahead in terms of having an actual conversation.

This times one million.

Alexa is the automation in my life, my music, my everything.

Siri is completely useless.

Apple should just pay for the rights to Alexa and swap out Siri until it's ready for prime time
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
4 weeks ago


Why would anyone use this? Or any Alexa device?

edit: so many disagree yet no offers of explanations why

Because Siri is infuriatingly stupid. I’m not using her in the car anymore because she is so stupid, I’m affraid I would drive off a cliff one day out of frustration. Sending messages, asking directions, getting the weather, turning off the lights...it all works fine one moment, and the next she switches off her brain. It’s like Siri is operated by actual people, and they all work with different scripts and produce different results.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
4 weeks ago
It would be nice to swap out Siri for Alexa. Siri is decent for basic tasks but Alexas is a couple levels ahead in terms of having an actual conversation.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
4 weeks ago
Meh. If I’m gonna have to grab my phone to unlock it so Siri can launch the Alexa app, I might as well just go ahead and tap the Alexa button myself.

I’d much rather for Amazon to rebuild the app from the ground up because, as it is right now, it’s got to be one of the worst experiences about the Alexa ecosystem. I love Alexa (she’s infinitely better than Siri) and I love my Echos. But I loathe the app.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
4 weeks ago


Because Siri is infuriatingly stupid. I’m not using her in the car anymore because she is so stupid, I’m affr I would drive off a cliff one day out of frustration. Sending messages, asking directions, getting the weather, turning off the lights...it all works fine one moment, and the next she switched off her brain. It’s like Siri is operated by actual people, and they all works with different scripts and produce different results.

I use Siri regularly via CarPlay, works great.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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