Amazon Alexa Custom is here to replace the poor in-car imitations of voice assistants in our phones and home smart speakers.
- BMW’s new voice assistant will be powered by Alexa.
- More capable than current Alexa support
- Amazon’s Echo Auto devices have been refreshed.
For those who prefer Alexa – a rival to Amazon’s Siri and Google Assistant (and, *Cough* Samsung Bixby) – BMW has confirmed that it will integrate the new Alexa Custom Assistant In its own built-in car voice assistant.
BMW has already offered integration with Amazon Alexa since 2018, but in this new form, BMW’s native voice assistant will be powered by the online shopping company’s much more advanced and advanced smarts.
What is the difference? Plus being able to more intelligently understand what you want from it – whether it’s answering a question, setting a reminder, calling a contact, playing media or starting the car. Controlling features – The new system will also allow BMW to set custom wakes. Words it is likely that owners will keep saying. “Hey BMW” Calling an assistant instead “Hey Alexa”.
The upgrade comes thanks to the launch of Alexa Custom in late 2021, which is designed to effectively incentivize automakers to license and rely on Amazon tech, rather than investing in it. Go, which is usually a poor imitation of our phones and voice assistants at home. Smart speaker.
What is Alexa Custom even?
In many respects, Alexa Custom enters as a rival to Apple’s CarPlay and Google’s Android Auto – along with the more powerful Android Automotive that now powers the entire infotainment systems of brands like Polestar, Stellantis and soon Ford. Is. But, while all of these are a combination of visual and audio-driven interfacing, Alexa Custom is for voice only. BMW’s familiar system will continue as a visual and touch-based infotainment interface.
Although not confirmed, it’s likely that Google Assistant and Siri will continue as the default voice assistants when drivers connect to the Android Auto and CarPlay systems.
The next-generation voice assistant will appear in new models “over the next two years.”
With BMW’s latest-gen iDrive 8 still fairly fresh, we can likely expect this upgrade to be part of the iDrive 9 launch.
The new Amazon Alexa Echo Auto
Eco Auto has been upgraded with a new design and ease of use.
Look, if you really prefer to use Amazon Alexa — and many people do — over Siri on iPhone or Google Assistant on Android, this is probably the easiest way to get it in your car.
Android users won’t have much use for this, since you can set Alexa as your default voice assistant on any Android phone, but iPhone users don’t have that kind of customization available — and they probably don’t. are the target customers for Newly upgraded Eco Auto.
Like the old one, the new Echo Auto is a small microphone-equipped smart box that connects to your phone and car via Bluetooth (or a 3.5mm cable as needed), drawing power from your phone’s USB port. It can then hear you ask it all the kinds of questions one would ask a voice assistant.
In its new form, the Echo Auto has five microphones — down from eight in the old one, though Amazon says they’re better and smarter.
It’s also small, especially so you can find the best possible place to mount it on your dashboard – with the included adhesive mount, that is.
The new Echo Auto isn’t on sale yet, but the old one is still listed as available on Amazon, priced at $79.