Alexa leaves me wanting more … is Google Home going to be the answer?

We’ve had an Alexa in our kitchen since close to when the device launched and it’s certainly been a fun and interesting product.  It’s limits however are quite clear even with as many additional skills as have been announced and delivered since it was first shipped.  Amazon doesn’t really have any of my personal or our household information loaded so it’s not a very helpful agent in managing things and the shopping list is a bit of a chore to use once loaded if you aren’t actually buying on Amazon. The more I’ve thought about it the more excited I … Continue reading Alexa leaves me wanting more … is Google Home going to be the answer?

No context notifications need to die. 

Do you see it?  It’s the one from Wink, my smart home hub.  Notifications like these fire off because I’ve set things to alert me – in  this case to be able to close the garage door remotely if it’s been open too long.  For presumably safeyly concerns, Chamberlain doesn’t allow the door to automatically be set to close so instead I get an alert and can manually change things.  This notification however is missing two key features that would make it considerably more useful and frankly it just seems like lazy design to skip them. We’ve had options added … Continue reading No context notifications need to die. 

Amazon dramatically expanding retail presence through “pop-ups”

One interesting part about Amazon’s pop-up stores is that they’re run by the devices team, not the retail team that opened Amazon’s bookstore last year. The initiative is led by Senior Vice President of Devices and Services Dave Limp, who oversees everything from the Kindle to the Echo.  That means the push for more pop-up stores coincides with the success of the Echo, which is widely considered to be the next big hit product for Amazon. The Echo’s success has prompted rivals such as Google and, reportedly, Apple to develop competing versions. According to multiple sources, Amazon is increasingly putting … Continue reading Amazon dramatically expanding retail presence through “pop-ups”