While electronic assistants such as Siri, Alexa and the unnamed Google Assistant have been mostly marketed to individuals, Amazon already has its sights set on something even bigger.
Amazon thinks its echo devices, armed with the Alexa assistant interface, could become the next must-have for business of every shape and size. According to Amazon, the potential uses for these devices range from routine tasks such as setting meetings and juggling room bookings for multiple people, retrieving data on the fly during meetings and handling routine maintenance adjustments such as environmental controls and power management.
Their Alexa for Business program already has plenty of support thanks to partner like Polycom and Capital One. Amazon has already begun to integrate the Alexa platform with widely used pieces of software such as Office 365.
The benefits of expanding into the business sector are fairly obvious for Amazon. Not only will they sell more echo units, the move will also position them as a real competitor with Google and Microsoft. If they can pull it off, it will be a win-win in terms of sales and standing.
Businesses, however, may show some initial reluctance to integrating voice controlled electronic assistants into their company. Not only are their concerns about poor quality and slow integration, there’s also the very real issue of security.
Still, with the electronic assistants and cloud support becoming increasingly common, the use of AI enabled electronic assistants in the workplace is likely inevitable. This move could signal a new form of industrial revolution that changes the face of office work in the same fundamental ways automation changed the assembly line.
- Amazon Wants to Make Alexa the ‘UI for the Enterprise’ (MarTech)
- Alexa for Business: 10 Key Takeaways (ZD Net)