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Amazon Alexa Blueprints: Here's how you can add new skills, responses

Here's how you can customize Alexa skills or responses to make it more personal.

  • Published: April 20, 2018 12:09 PM IST
Amazon Echo Dot Alexa-Pixabay

Do you want Amazon’s Alexa to answer more questions than it already does, or want her to take silly instructions from you? Amazon has just launched a new tool to let you customize Alexa. Called Alexa Blueprints, the idea is to allow users, who are non-coders, to build new Alexa skills and responses. In this manner, Alexa will be truly consumer-centric, and that includes customisable responses for questions such as “Who’s the best mom in the world”.

With Alexa Blueprints, it will be possible for a user to create their own voice apps, bedtime stories, trivia games, and so on. Skills, such as those for a babysitter, can also be added. “Alexa Skill Blueprints is an entirely new way for you to teach Alexa personalized skills just for you and your family,” Steve Rabuchin, Vice President, Amazon Alexa, explains.

How to use Alexa Blueprints

Before you put on your thinking hat to innovate skills and responses, it is to be understood that the ability to do so is currently limited to the US and for the English language. Visit “Settings” in your Alexa mobile app to change the device language to English US.

To begin with, the customization, visit the website and select a template or blueprint. Some of these include custom Q&A, fairytales, house guest, bachelorette party, birthday trivia, and much more. The categories range from Home, Fun and Games, Learning and Knowledge, and StoryTeller.

Once you select a template, you can customize the content. It is as simple as filling up a form and letting Alexa take care of the rest. For example, if you want Alexa to guide your guests about the house, you can choose the ‘Houseguest’ experience and edit responses. You can make your own responses for where the remote is located or whom to contact in case no one is around. You can add items to the list and other details. Similarly, there’s a ‘Burn’ list which you can ask Alexa to pull off on your friends when they visit you next. There’s a default list and you can edit them or add new ones.

When you are done customizing, you can name it and publish. The skill or response will be available to all Alexa-enabled devices associated with your account. If you do end up injecting silly responses, you don’t have to worry about the consequences, as these will remain private and won’t be available to the public or Alexa Skills Store, TechCrunch reports. You can later choose to enable, disable, or delete your skills from the dedicated section on the website.

Watch: Samsung Bixby Voice Assistant – First Look

The opening of Alexa skills to non-coders will help Amazon gain an edge over rivals Google Home and Apple HomePod. As Amazon was the first to introduce voice-operated smart home speakers, the introduction of Alexa Blueprints is also pioneered by the company. Amazon recently introduced its Echo speaker range in India. It will be interesting gain Alexa Blueprints ability to Indian languages.

  • Published Date: April 20, 2018 12:09 PM IST