What can an Amazon Alexa do? It can control lights, thermostats, lock doors, control cameras etc. But, amazon is going a step further in making your home as smart home. Now, Alexa can control your microwave oven too. Amazon announced cooking capabilities as part of the Smart Home Skill API today, so microwave manufacturers can build an Alexa skills for ovens.
There are four new skills added into Smart Home Skill API – Alexa.Cooking, Alexa.Cooking.TimeController, Alexa.TimeHoldController, and Alexa.CookingPresetController. You can leverage these interfaces today for microwaves and for appliances that support preset cooking. The interfaces are designed for future extensibility as support for more cooking devices becomes available.
Manufacturers can use these interfaces and Smart home skill API to enable users to give voice command using Alexa to microwave. An user can give command like “Alexa, defrost three pounds of chicken” or “Alexa, microwave for 50 seconds on high”. Users can now use voice command instead of pressing multiple buttons for Advance microwave features.
Microwave manufacturers are working hard to build Alexa skills into it and Whirlpool is ahead of all the developers. Whirlpool has already created Alexa skills for its microwave and expected to launch it soon. It has build skills to set microwave cook times, modes, power levels, and more instead of using the traditional and often confusing microwave experience. Other manufacturers like GE Appliances, Kenmore, LG, and Samsung are working on using the cooking capabilities in the Smart Home Skill API to let customers control their ovens and more appliances using Alexa in the future.
“We’re excited to take the next step in our work with Amazon through the Alexa Fund investment and to offer our customers even more engaging voice experiences with their June Ovens. “We’re already bringing hands-free voice control to customers via our June Oven custom skill, which makes it incredibly convenient for them to do things like preheat the oven while they’re mixing ingredients, set and check timers, and stop cooking without taking off their oven mitts,” said Matt Van Horn, Co-Founder and CEO of June Life. This next development in Smart Home Skill API support for ovens will enable our owners to give shorter, simpler commands to their June Ovens and receive updates on their food as it is cooking. We look forward to exploring what else we can do with our skill as the oven support rolls out.”
Amazon is trying to become market leader in smart home market and that is the reason it is adding new skills in Amazon Alexa every time. Clearly Amazon is ahead of its rivals in this segment.