FRESH THINKING Seat irst to plumb Alexa in-car
Amazon’s voice-control system for music, nav and more
Do you like giving orders? Seat has just the thing... Seat will become Europe’s irst car maker to o er Alexa, Amazon’s voice recognition system, in a car, namely new Leons and Atecas by the end of 2017. Alexa? Sounds like a profootballer’s irst-born! Alexa is a brilliant bit of kit, born of Amazon’s desire to create ‘Star Trek-like computing’ says the irm’s Ned Curic. Basically, you ask Alexa to tell you the weather, order a Domino’s Pizza, or play a band on Spotify – and it happens. Alexa basically sends your voice command to the Cloud, which decodes it and typically uses an app in your Alexa ecosystem to carry out the action. So what’ll she do in a Leon? Tap the steering wheel mute button to chat to Alexa, in more natural ways than the tortuous command lists of typical in-car voice systems. Say ‘Alexa, ask my Seat to navigate to McDonald’s’ and the nav will spring to life.
Using Amazon’s opensource programming kit, Seat is developing ‘skills’ for its cars, including dealer interactions. Alexa runs through the car’s phone microphone and stereo speakers, so the interface should feel slick.
So soon you’ll be able to operate your home’s internet of things lights/ heating/garage door from your car’s driving seat.
Domestic version (above) a huge hit; now Seat brings it to the spec list