People have been using Alexa for various tasks around the house. The technology that powers Amazon’s Alexa assistant can now be used by one and all to add voice control to their creations having text- or voice-based chat interfaces. The e-commerce company is clearly not just looking only for money in the short term. Amazon opening up the service is described by Reuters as a move to become the top player in voice-controlled computing.
The technology, which is called Lex, bundles in speech recognition, conversational interactions and text recognition. According to Werner Vogels, the e-commerce titan’s CTO, Lex could lead to assistants and chatbots that sound friendlier and more human than their predecessors.
This device runs as a service in the cloud instead of in your own data center or on your own desktop. Amazon does not have access to data from the thousands of millions of smartphone devices (as Microsoft and Google do) to test its AI and provide feedback. Thus, Amazon requires a lot of sources of data. Its decision to open the technology will help it use the interactions of the apps created by third-party developers using Lex. Using this, Amazon plans to make Lex better continuously using data from people’s interactions with Alexa and with third-party developers’ apps that use the service. Such real-world feedback should provide immense value to Amazon for building AI tools.