Amazon wants Alexa to interact with as many people as possible, including the ability to show them things. And that means freeing the virtual assistant from the confines of Amazon’s screen-supporting smart speaker Echo Show or Fire TV, devices that give Alexa a face (and of course a voice).
The company announced Thursday at its big hardware event that it’s releasing a “smart screen” software development kit, which will allow developers to bring Echo Show-like functionality to other non-Amazon pieces of hardware. That could mean integrating Alexa into a smart TV or even a refrigerator; as long as there’s a display, developers can integrate Alexa into the device.
And there are already two companies that are integrating the SDK into devices. Amazon announced that Lenovo and Sony will be bringing Alexa to their devices through the smart screen SDK. Alexa will be available on Lenovo Smart Tabs, a new line of Android tablets, in the “not so distant future,” according to Amazon.
Meanwhile, Sony will integrate the SDK on all of its Alexa-capable televisions, starting with the music and smart home camera feature this year. Sony will integrate Alexa into other feature that can show you things in the first half of next year.