Amazon launched an important update for its Alexa app on iOS today, enabling users to use the Alexa virtual assistant directly from their iOS device to control smart home accessories, ask questions, and other numerous features.
The new Alexa app update fulfills a commitment Amazon initiated in early 2018 when it promoted the capacity for iOS users to access full voice control directly through the Alexa application. Upon release, the feature was limited to Android.
Adding voice control to the Alexa app on iOS is part of Amazon’s long-term objective of making its virtual assistant available in as many different places as possible. Undoubtedly, the biggest dilemma with that strategy on iOS is that users must first navigate to the Alexa app to use voice control, rather than being able to simply say the “Alexa” trigger word.
While competing with Siri, it also significantly reduces the usefulness that a voice assistant is destined to provide.
Within the Amazon app, users can access the complete resources of Alexa features, including question and answer, smart home control, music playback, and much more.
“From there, however, you can ask Alexa questions, listen to music, access skills and control smart devices — you know, the standard Alexa fare. Queries like weather, sports, calendar, and movies will also offer up a visual component in the app,” TechCrunch states.