Yep, you read that right Amazon Alex is looking to break into the hotel industry with Alexa for Hospitality. Amazon says that the basic idea is “Alexa for Hospitality is an experience that brings the simplicity and convenience of Alexa to hotels, vacation rentals, and other hospitality properties using in-room Alexa enabled devices, like an Echo”.
But what can Alexa for Hospitality do?
Amazon says “When you stay in a property with Alexa, you can play music from iHeartRadio and TuneIn, check the weather, set alarms, and ask for general information. Additionally, properties can create custom experiences with Alexa to make your stay more convenient and enjoyable. For example, you may be able to request items like towels or toiletries, get local recommendations, contact the front desk, control smart home features such as lights or room temperature, entertainment, and more, all by simply asking Alexa”.
But with all the recent privacy issues in the media, Amazon has built a bunch of privacy features that should help ease people’s worries about if it’s listening to them or not. For example;
Wake word: To use Alexa, simply say the wake word, “Alexa.” When Alexa detects the wake word, the light ring atop the device will light up blue to indicate that she is streaming audio to the cloud, where Alexa recognizes and responds to your request. Alexa will not stream audio to the cloud unless she is activated by the wake word.
Microphone on/off button: Using Alexa is optional. If you do not want to use Alexa, you can push the microphone on/off button built on top of the device. When the microphone on/off button is pressed, the microphones are electrically disconnected, cannot detect the wake word, and cannot stream any audio to the cloud. The light ring will turn red when the microphones are disconnected.
Privacy: Hotels can’t listen to what you said to Alexa or what she said back.
Security: Amazon encrypts all data in transit between the Amazon Echo and Amazon’s servers, and all customer data is securely kept on Amazon AWS servers.
It’s steps like this that give proof that Voice is not only coming but it’s here and it’s not going away anytime soon.