We've Built Our First Alexa Skill

We have successfully developed an first Alexa skill.

Using Amazon’s AVS (Alexa Voice Service) we have successfully developed our first Alexa Skill.

What’s an Alexa Skill?  
Just like and App on your phone you can install an Alexa Skill to your Amazon Echo device.  BBC News, Fitbit, Spotify all have an Alexa skill to allow you to connect to your accounts.

You can then ask Alexa to “Play Foo Fighters latest album” or “Ask Fitbit how many calories I’ve burned today”.  Alexa will carry out your instruction.

What is Amazon’s AVS?
The AVS, Alexa Voice Service, allows developers to build an Alexa skill.  As a developer you can tell Alexa to expect a instruction from a user.  AVS will find a match for the question and route instruction on to the relevant response or skill.  The developer’s skill can then take that instruction and pass it on to their own web service to carry out this instruction and pass the response back through AVS and on to the Echo device that took the instruction in the first place.

Why do we need an Alexa skill?
Net4orce have built their own universal IoT controller / hub.  We are currently connected to more than 30+ devices, from 17+ manufacturers, using a combination of ZigBee, Z-Wave & OpenThings.  

Voice recognition systems, such as Amazon Echo and Google Home, are one of many ways to interact with the controller.  Using your voice recognition system, you might instruct the controller to “Switch off all the lights downstairs” or “Boost the heating for 30 minutes”  or even “Test the smoke alarm on the landing”.  This all sounds futuristic, but it’s not, the technology is here.  While the costs are currently out of reach for most homeowners, they will come down.

Voice recognition along with other remote controllers allow users to control their home and office both inside and out.