Amazon Announces New Alexa Powered Devices
It appears that Amazon is not slowing down in its bid to make every appliance in our homes “smart”.
Many had questioned the usefulness of some Alexa devices. They have become a mainstay in some homes, but others are steering far clear. That may become even more difficult in the future, as the company is looking at adding a whole host of new devices.
Amazon Announces New Alexa-Enabled Devices
The online retailer is coming out with a set of devices, which include a microwave, that will be able to connect with Alexa. These devices can sync with an Alexa-powered speaker that may already be in the home, but also with smartphones.
All the homeowner would require to use these devices is to connect them with their smartphone. And then it is a matter of telling Alexa to do something.
For instance, I could put a bag of popcorn in the microwave, ask Alexa to heat it up for five minutes and then tell it to stop when I hear the popping has ended!
Add Smart Functionality to Basic Appliances
Another move from the company will be met with cheers, depending on who you ask! Amazon has come out with a $25 smart plug that can be added to various outlets around your home.
The smart plug will deliver Alexa connectivity. Like the smart appliances, it can connect to your smartphone if you have the Alexa app installed and setup.
Say you have a coffee pot, light or a fan that you want to control with your voice. As you walk into the kitchen, you can ask Alexa to start brewing your coffee. Your command will trigger the smart plug to turn on.
Useful Gadgets or Invasion of Privacy?
There are two schools of thought when it comes to any device that is Alexa-enabled. Some see these gadgets as adding a useful element to the home. Instead of needing to press buttons, you can simply talk to the device and it will do what you want.
But there is another school of thought as well. Some feel that when you are adding so many of these devices to your home, you are giving up all privacy.
While Amazon does not claim to listen in to your regular conversations through such devices, many are skeptical. And I am one of those people!
Keep Alexa Out of My Home
I can understand why families may want to add such devices to their home, especially when they are so affordable. Amazon always prices its gadgets on the low end. But I want Alexa to stay far away from my home!
The idea of a speaker microwave or smart plug that is waiting for my voice commands is very unsettling.
And while the company may claim these devices only listen for commands, there is nothing stopping them from constantly listening to what you are saying. It could even be possible for the devices to relay those conversations back to Amazon servers.
Alexa may be the future for many people’s home gadgets, but I am staying far away – for now!