Toyota said on Tuesday that it will be deploying Alexa beginning with its Entune 3.0 App Suite and Lexus Enform App Suite 2.0 vehicle system software updates for select 2018 model year vehicles later in 2018, giving US customers access to Alexa while on the go. The automaker said more models would be added in 2019.
360i used proprietary software to quiz Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa on their ability to respond to the same set of queries across four categories: 5,000 in travel, 5,000 in retail, 3,000 in finance, and 3,000 in automotive.
To show enthusiasm of the latest move, Zack Hicks, senior vice president Toyota Motor North America and CEO Toyota Connected, said in a statement, "Voice services are rapidly becoming more popular and through our integration with Amazon Alexa, Toyota and Lexus customers will soon be able to easily speak to Alexa in their cars while on the go". But it is interesting to see how Alexa would get into this same nascent space. As an example, drivers could tell Alexa to turn on the living room lights while the owner is pulling into the garage. This aside, the auto is expected to have Alexa in its infotainment system.
But where motorists typically have to learn fairly rigid voice commands to operate the onboard enTune system, Alexa can understand and respond to much more natural speech, while also offering a much wider array of services and functions. The 75-employee company that specializes in wearable display and virtual reality and augmented reality technologies managed to integrate Alexa into its invention thanks to an Amazon program that enables third-party manufacturers to put the digital assistant into their products. Amazon Echo was "the first smart speaker of choice that started to enter people's homes", he says. They also more closely resemble normal glasses, although Vuzix's eyewear is still noticeably thicker than standard prescription glasses.