Amazon Premier League deal could be a boost for music-streaming
This story may sound somewhat parochial, but bear with us. Amazon has paid an undisclosed amount for the rights to stream 20 English Premier League (football) matches for each of the three seasons starting in 2019. The...
June 11, 2018
Alexa in the spotlight over sharing of private conversation
When privacy campaigners express concerns about the rise of smart speakers, the suggestion that big-tech firms are ‘listening in’ (and, indeed, potentially recording) private conversations is often raised as a worry. A story...
May 25, 2018
Amazon now has 100m paid Prime members globally
‘Divinely discontent’ customers, perfect handstands, six-page narratives… There’s quite a lot to parse in Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ latest letter to shareholders: it’s an interesting insight into how he sees the...
April 19, 2018
TuneIn launches discounted subscription for Alexa devices
Streaming-radio service TuneIn is trying something new for Amazon’s Echo speakers. It’s a discounted premium subscription tier, which will cost $2.99 a month from Alexa-enabled devices, compared to the usual $9.99-a-month...
April 3, 2018
Smart speakers’ impact on music: ‘I don’t think it can be overhyped…’
More than 26m smart speakers were shipped globally in 2017 according to research firm Futuresource, with the Amazon Echo and Google Home ranges proving popular devices. That was the spur for an event hosted by British...
March 21, 2018
DeepMusic Alexa skill serves up AI-generated songs
Amid all the industry conversation about how smart speakers will affect the way people listen to music, the assumption has been that the music in question will be made by humans. Here’s a new Alexa skill to make you...
March 12, 2018
Survey claims early satisfaction with smart speakers is high
89% of Americans who’ve bought a smart speaker so far are satisfied with their device, according to a new survey published by investment firm Loup Ventures. “A closer look at the results reveals the reason for this...
February 22, 2018
Amazon Alexa gets new music-playlist creation features
Amazon hasn’t made a big deal of its latest smart-speaker feature, but it’s an extremely interesting development for anyone who’s been thinking about how playlists evolve in a world of voice control. Users – initially...
February 9, 2018
7digital makes video news programme for Amazon’s Echo Show
7digital’s Entertainment News division is making the most of the screen that comes with Amazon’s Echo Show smart speaker. Just launched in the UK after its US debut earlier in the year, the Show has a seven-inch screen...
November 17, 2017
Amazon launches Echo devices and Alexa in Japan
Amazon is continuing its slow-but-steady global rollout of its Echo smart speakers and Alexa voice assistant. Having launched the devices in India in October, now they’re debuting in a major music market: Japan. The...
November 8, 2017
Smart speakers to fuel ‘tenfold’ increase in smart-home devices
Research firm Forrester’s latest prediction for the smart-devices market focuses on the US alone, we should say. “Smart home devices are expected to grow tenfold between 2017 and 2022,” claimed the company in its latest...
October 24, 2017
Google Home Mini and Max fire up the smart-speakers market
Google held a high-profile press launch last night, with its new Pixel 2 smartphones taking top billing. Yet we’re more interested in the evolution of the company’s smart-speaker strategy, with two new models – the...
October 5, 2017