How many times has someone told you “I’ll get back to you about that” and then they never ever get back to you? Well. Amazon’s Alexa was kind of like that person for some time now, but now they’re turning over a new leaf. If you activate Alexa Answer Updates, it will really get back to you if it eventually learns the answer to something you asked that it still couldn’t understand or process. This feature is still just rolling out to selected users in the US so we don’t have enough feedback yet to see if it’s effective.
While Alexa is one of the most popular digital assistants right now due to Amazon’s Echo devices also being more available in the market, as an information service it was a bit lacking. Different studies showed that Google Assistant was way ahead of it in terms of being able to understand and answer questions correctly. Amazon has been able to make significant improvements to its answering powers, but customers don’t have a way of knowing that it is indeed getting smarter.
The Amazon Alexa Answer Updates will somehow try to solve that problem. You can simply activate it by saying, “Alexa, enable Answer Updates”. The same way, if you don’t want to be bothered, you can just say, “Alexa, turn off Answer Updates.” This skill will be triggered if you ask it a factual question that it cannot yet answer and not when you’re listening to a news item or other information about the news item.
What isn’t clear just yet is how Alexa will get back to you. There is a notifications feature within the Alexa app, so that’s probably one way it can tell you that it finally knows the answer to your query. It’s also possible that they can send a notification through SMS or email, since both are still being used as a notification center for Alexa-related updates.
The most common thing that users do when it comes to smart speakers is to ask it questions. So naturally, a digital assistant that can answer questions accurately and smartly should be ahead of the pack. Let’s see if Alexa can eventually catch up with Google Assistant because of this new feature.
August 7, 2018 at 06:01AM