Published: Thu, January 18, 2018
IT | By Lester Massey

Welcoming Amazon Echo to the Telstra Smart Home family

Welcoming Amazon Echo to the Telstra Smart Home family

Of course, you can also use Amazon Music Unlimited with the range of Amazon Echo devices, the Amazon Echo, Echo Dot and Echo Plus, also now on their way to Australian and New Zealand shores.

Like the Google Home, it responds to your voice in a variety of ways, offering hands-free access to music, weather, news and information. Amazon Echo is set to arrive Down Under in February, and will feature a Telstra Smart Home® skill.

Amazon's launch in Australia may have had a few road bumps along the way, with a false starts eventually making way for an underwhelming catalogue, but the online retail giant did promise to bring its own smart AI assistant to our shores in "early 2018" and that promise has been kept.

Just select Finance News from Westpac via the Alexa app and then ask, "Alexa, what's the news?" "Now, customers can simply ask for assistance with all kinds of tasks, and the hipages skill can help".

REA Group said realestate.com.au would provide a "flash briefing of daily property news" using Alexa.

Qantas, NAB and Westpac had launched localised skills for Alexa, checking travel details and loyalty points, or account balances, respectively.

"We know our customers want a seamless banking experience that fits with their needs and complements their lifestyles", said Westpac chief executive, consumer bank, George Frazis.

As you might expect, the shift is affecting older technologies and services.


Locally, Amazon has had to work with Australian developers to make this happen, and with the technology being adapted to support both Australian and New Zealand accents, not to mention local knowledge from both places, is built to work for folks from our side of the world.

Across the show floor of CES too, there were just as many Google Assistant smart locks and connected appliances as there were Alexa-powered. Users will be able to search for jobs, get company ratings and receive employment market updates.

The company has sold more than 20 million Alexa-enabled devices to date, according to Consumer Intelligence Research Partners, and nearly three times as many as Google.

"Initially customers can stay across the status of their bill and when it's due with a simple voice command".

"Over time, we'll add services, like the ability to call up data on how much energy a household is using and when".

"Alexa allows amaysim to engage with our customers in a more natural way when it comes to account information and other useful services".

The company also had a physical booth at CES for the first time ever this year to further underline its new-found commitment to the show, though that was hit by a twist of fate when it couldn't open said booth on day one because of heavy rain.

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