Alexa Wake Words Now Available To Outside Devs

Last week Amazon’s Alexa team made a pretty groundbreaking announcement: developers of third party devices now have access to the Alexa wake words and can use them with their own devices.


Date More Impressed With Smart Home


Amazon’s even sharing instructions for how to make your own Alexa device with a Raspberry Pi using this new functionality. From Amazon’s Ted Karczewski:

What makes the Amazon Echo so appealing is the fact that customers can control smart home devices, access news and weather reports, stream music, and even hear a few jokes just by asking Alexa. It’s simple and intuitive.

We’re excited to announce an important Alexa Voice Service (AVS) API update that now enables you to build voice-activated products that respond to the “Alexa” wake word. The update includes new hands-free speech recognition capabilities and a “cloud endpointing” feature that automatically detects end-of-user speech in the cloud. Best of all, these capabilities are available through the existing v20160207 API—no upgrades needed.

You can learn more about various use cases in our designing for AVS documentation.

Get Started with Our New Raspberry Pi Project

To help you get started quickly, we are releasing a new hands-free Raspberry Pi prototyping project with third-party wake word engines from Sensory and KITT.AI. Build your own wake word enabled, Amazon Alexa prototype in under an hour by visiting the Alexa GitHub.

And don’t forget to share your finished projects on Twitter using #avsDevs. AVS Evangelist Amit Jotwani and team will be highlighting our favorite projects, as well as publishing featured developer interviews, on the Alexa Blog. You can find Amit on Twitter here: @amit.

Learn more about the Alexa Voice Service, its features, and design use cases. See below for more information on Alexa and the growing family of Alexa-enabled products and services:


Alexa Developer Resources Alexa-Enabled Devices Amazon Alexa Devices
Alexa Voice Service (AVS) Triby Amazon Echo (UK visitors click here)
Alexa Skills Kit (ASK) CoWatch Amazon Echo Dot(UK visitors click here)
The Alexa Fund Pebble Core Amazon Tap
AVS Developer Forums Nucleus Amazon Fire TV (UK visitors click here)
Alexa on a Raspberry Pi Amazon Fire TV Stick (UK visitors click here)

Have questions? We are here to help. Visit us on the AVS Forum or Alexa GitHub to speak with one of our experts.

AVS is coming soon to the UK and Germany. Read the full announcement here.

Thanks, Ted!


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Ready to get started on a project of your own? The CanaKit Raspberry Pi 3 Complete Starter Kit – 32 GB Edition (UK visitors click here) is the all-in-one kit to get you up and running with building your own Alexa powered device quickly. Currently rated 5/5 stars and priced at $74.99.

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