Amazon Alexa is coming to your microwave, for some reason

Amazon is making it easier to bring Alexa to devices like headphones and smartwatches

A new report suggests customers who own an Amazon Echo "smart speaker" spend even more.

The Echo was $200 when it launched - far too expensive for a lot of people to justify using voice controls to turn on the lights or play music when walking up and pushing a switch or pressing a button worked just fine.

The companies that are teaming up with Amazon's voice assistant plan on going beyond the microwave oven as they are creating other appliances that link up with Alexa.

Initially, there are four new capability interfaces in the Smart Home Skill API and it includes Alexa.Cooking, Alexa.Cooking.TimeController, Alexa.TimeHoldController, and Alexa.CookingPresetController. Just last October, we reported on 65 direct partners being supported by Assistant and now if you go over to the Home Control section of your Google Home app or Assistant's settings, you can find that the number has jumped a little over 100. The tools are available from Amazon for developers now, but we'll still have to wait a while to see compatible appliances. The skill enables customers to easily configure, start, and operate their connected Whirlpool microwaves.

Amazon says that, to begin with, Alexa will be able to set microwave cook times, modes and power levels, but there's no word as to whether the AI assistant is yet smart enough to figure out how to set the ruddy clock. Rather than focusing primarily on how to sell devices to new customers, vendors will look to things like advertising, content subscription, premium services or enterprise products to monetize their installed base of current users.

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The catch, as you might imagine, is that your ovens and microwaves need to support this feature, and nearly all "smart" versions now don't.

Additionally, Amazon has also announced that Alexa Fund, the company's venture capital arm, has invested in June Life, makers of the June Oven, a countertop smart oven that makes cooking easier, faster, and tastier.

All in all, this is an interesting development in the technology sphere.

The Fire TV Stick's biggest shortcoming is that it's still very US-centric.

The first is to let brands pay for placement when users are shopping through Alexa.

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