NEWS

Amazon’s New Free Smart Home Consultations Service

March 10, 2017

The joy of making your house do your bidding using voice control has just been enhanced by Amazon’s new free consultation service. You no longer have to dig through the web looking for the best gadgets to automate your home with anymore. It’s now possible to call Amazon technicians to come to your house to advise you about automating your home.

Competition = Better Tech for Us!

Amazon has introduced this new service because they have been facing growing competition from other tech firms. Their most famous home automation feature, Alexa, has made their speakers popular all over the country. They sold more than 6 million Amazon Echo speakers in 2016, enough to attract curiosity from other tech giants. Companies like Apple have been sending signals that they intend to created a similar feature for their devices.

Apple already has home automation software called HomeKit, but it is nothing like the Amazon Echo. Their voice assistant Siri is also not as versatile as Alexa, which is available for a wider selection of devices. With Amazon Echo or Echo Dot, you can walk into your home and ask Alexa to turn on the lights, switch off the thermostat, and even turn on your television. Alexa can have a conversation with you with a natural voice that is pleasant to listen to.

Hanging on its popularity, third-party hardware and software companies have begun manufacturing products compatible with Amazon’s Alexa. These include the Samsung Family Hub Fridge, Nest Thermostat, Philips Hue White Starter Kit, WeMo Light Switch, and more. Alexa has become the secret ingredient for making gadgets hot. Despite this, Amazon executives know when the big guys at Apple set their eyes on something they never give up.

A Personalized Service

Amazon wants to retain its market share in the home automation market by using the new “free smart home consultation service.” It is a free consultation service that takes about an hour. An Amazon expert comes to your home to evaluate your Wi-Fi signal strength and let you try new automation products. They may also test voice control in your home with Alexa.

Amazon is using this new service to expose their customers to new ways of using the Alexa feature to control different appliances and electronics in their homes. At the end of every consultation, the expert creates for the customer a relevant and customized recommendation list of smart home products compatible with Alexa.

The consultation service aims to make shopping for products compatible with Amazon’s virtual assistant easier. Since many companies are producing home automation products, it is sometimes difficult for consumers to pick the ones that work well with Alexa.

So far, these consultation visits by Amazon employees are getting good reviews. Since it is still in the trial stage, only a selected group of Amazon users can access this new service. The free consultation service is available in Seattle, San Jose, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego.

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