Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer is also currently the leader in voice-powered devices, as its Alexa voice platform has now surpassed its 15,000 skill count milestone.
Two years ago, Amazon created the Siri of Amazon and called it Alexa– a voice platform that acts as an intelligent assistant, which is commonly used in Amazon’s Echo and Echo Dot devices. The news of Alexa’s new skill set was first reported by Voicebot and later confirmed by Amazon to Techcrunch.
The new 15,000 milestone is up from the 10,000 skills count it accomplished in late February, and up from the 7,000, it reached in January. “We’ve been blown away by the innovation and activity in the Alexa developer community,” Amazon said in an announcement in February. In that month the company also reported that the 10,000 skill represented a 3x increase from September 2016.
Voicebot reported the news on July 2, but its report stated that Alexa had actually passed 15,000 for the first time on June 30, 2017. According to their report, skill counts for the Amazon platform more than doubled in the first six months of 2017 and ended June at 15,069. The number accounts for Amazon’s Alexa skills in the U.S and not for those in the UK and Germany, as some of Alexa’s voice skills are unique to those countries and some are duplicates, which makes it hard to uncover an exact global Alexa skill count, according to the report. However, the report states it could nearly be 20,000 or even more.
Of Alexa’s 15,000 skills, flash briefings make up 20 percent of US skills, Voicebot noted. These flash briefings refer to information-focused skills associated with news content such as The Wall Street Journal, NPR and the Washington Post. But unlike the voice platform’s custom skills these decreased over the last few months; in April flash briefings accounted for 24 percent, 23 percent at the beginning of May, 22 percent in June and now only 20 percent in July.
Amazon is currently ahead in voice-powered devices, compared to tech companies like Google Home, Lenovo, LG and others, according to Tech Crunch, who says it is expected to control 70 percent of the market this year.
Google Voice Apps and Microsoft’s Skills for Cortana– equivalents of Amazon’s Alexa– both are lagging behind in terms of skill count. Google Voice Apps has a 378 count, while Skills for Cortana had a 65 count, according to Voicebot.
Amazon’s introduced Alexa just in 2014, now two years later it is surging ahead of its competitors.