Amazon is bringing Alexa to lightbulbs and small toys

Amazon is bringing Alexa to lightbulbs and small toys

Amazon’s Alexa will start coming in much smaller packages, it seems. The voice assistant will now run on devices with as little as 1MB of memory and low-power chips like the Cortex-M processor, according to TechCrunch, meaning you could find it in lightbulbs and simple toys.

Previously, Alexa functionality required at least 100MB of RAM and an Arm Cortex-A processor. Dirk Didascalou, vice president of Amazon Web Services for internet of things, told TechCrunch it cut this down by offloading much of the processing to the cloud — now devices just need wake word detection.

Didascalou noted that the lower specs allow “ultra dumb” ones to run the assistant, and it’ll be cheaper to include it.
“With this reduction in production cost, customers can now cost-effectively build new categories of differentiated voice-enabled products such as light switches, thermostats, and small appliances,” AWS wrote in a blog post. “This allows consumers to talk directly to Alexa in new parts of their home, office, or hotel rooms for a truly ambient experience.”