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Alexa gets smarter about calendar appointments

As digital assistants improve, we’re learning new things to expect from them, but the tasks that a real-life assistant may have handled before can still be a bit of a challenge to home assistants. Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant is gaining functionality to help it get smarter about working with your calendar. The new abilities will let users move appointments around and schedule meetings based on other people’s availability. If you’ve been shared on someone’s calendar availability, Alexa will be able to suggest times that work for both of you. Just say, “Alexa schedule a meeting with name” and Amazon’s assistant will search through your schedule for a good time, suggesting up to two time slots that could work. On a more basic feature level, Alexa won’t make you cancel appointments and reschedule them if a meeting time changes. You’ll be able to just ask Alexa to move an existing meeting, something that should have probably been supported from the beginning, but hey, better late than never. Both of these features are available to U.S. users today.

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New HP All-In-One PC Comes With Alexa Built In – Ubergizmo

Ubergizmo New HP All-In-One PC Comes With Alexa Built In Ubergizmo Amazon's Alexa digital personal assistant is making its way into a wide variety of devices which is why it's not surprising to see that Alexa has made its way into an all-in-one PC as well. HP has launched an updated Envy Curved AiO PC which features a ... and more »

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Alexa can unlock Yale’s smart deadbolt locks

Amazon's Alexa has been useful for locking Yale's smart deadbolts, but what about unlocking them when there's a guest at the door? You're set after today. Yale has introduced Alexa support for unlocking its Assure Locks with voice commands. You'll...

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TiVo adds Alexa voice control to its DVRs

TiVo’s DVRs are getting Alexa support. The company is announcing its lineup of DVRs, including Series 4 (Premiere), 5 (Roamio), and 6 (Bolt) boxes like TiVo BOLT VOX introduced last fall, will be gaining support for Amazon’s virtual assistant, Alexa.  The assistant will be able to do things like change the channel, skip commercials, jump back or forward, launch apps like Netflix, and more, says TiVo. The company is not the only third-party DVR maker to have added support for Alexa. Thanks to developer tools like the Video Skill API,  other cable and satellite TV companies, streaming services, and content providers can now add voice control to their devices and apps, as well. For example, Dish last fall became the first U.S. pay TV provider to integrate with Alexa for hands-free TV. Others working with Amazon include DirecTV and TechCrunch’s parent (by way of Oath), Verizon. Amazon’s Video Skill API was updated in March to include support for DVR recording, allowing users to set and manage their DVR recordings via their voice – that’s something TiVo, presumably, will add at a later date, as it’s not live yet. At the time of Amazon’s announcement, it had also said TiVo was one of the companies developing experiences using the Video Skill API.

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