Amazon's Alexa is already pretty amazing. With just a simple device like the Echo Dot you can search the Internet, shop online, play your favorite music, and figure out whether you should be wearing a jacket or not. Well, now Amazon has released a beta of the Alexa Gadgets Toolkit, and Alexa's functionality is going to explode.
The Gadgets Toolkit will allow developers to build their very own Alexa compatible gadgets. With built-in Bluetooth, they can pair to any Echo devices. Once connected, Alexa will then have control of the gadget's features, including lights, motors, sounds, and more. Build a robot with lips that move when Alexa speaks or a power tool Alexa can run and tell you how to use. The toolkit will come with self-service APIs, interfaces, technical documents, and sample codes. You'll be able to design your gadgets to directly pair with Echo devices, boost connectivity, and receive over-the-air updates.
Amazon has detailed a lot of the interfaces already available and the ones that will continue to be added over time. Some of the examples include devices that respond to wake word detection, speech synchronization, notification response, timers, alarms, reminders, and visual performances through music.
Many companies like Hasbro, WoWWee Group Limited, BabyPlus, and Novalia, have already gotten on board and started implementing these tools. The new gadgets will be available later this year and include things like dancing plushies, Alexa-powered Big Mouth Billy Bass toys, and more. If you're looking to develop your own gadgets, you can sign up through Amazon's page. Otherwise, sit back and relax as we see a whole new wave of Alexa-powered toys, tools, and more this year.