Amazon brings Alexa to the office
In addition to being a giant in the consumer goods market, Amazon has already made in-roads into the corporate world through its Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform. Now, it’s made another foray into the office through Alexa for Business.
Alexa is the company’s voice-activated virtual assistant; its equivalent to Apple’s Siri.
"Voice is the first disruption [of the ongoing artificial intelligence boom] that will be driven by the capabilities of sort of the deep learning tools that we're giving you," said Werner Vogels, Amazon's chief technology officer, speaking at the AWS annual re:Invent conference last week.
“It’s a natural way of interacting with your systems,” he said.
Amazon envisions that Alexa would be able to help companies and their workers organise conference calls, book meeting rooms, or order office supplies.
Alexa for Business will be integrated with Microsoft Exchange, Salesforce, SAP, and other platforms. Amazon is also working with WeWork, an office space startup (which has recently entered Singapore), to integrate its Alexa-connected Echo speaker devices to their workspaces.