Your car just joined the cloud. Select 2018 Toyota models will now feature Amazon’s Alexa. The new option will link with other Alexa devices in an owner’s home, as well as link up with other smart-home devices. While it seems the first 2018 models will be test dummies for the system, a wider selection of 2019 models are planning on featuring Alexa as well.
Alexa will not be a feature in and of itself, but will be paired with Toyota’s Entune 3.0 App Suite, as well as Lexus’s Enform App Suite 2.0. Drivers will be able to ask Alexa for directions verbally, have the news read to them, add items to their ongoing shopping list, and even adjust temperatures at their home (assuming you have compatible smart-home thermostats). As other devices come onboard and join Alexa’s reach, the Entune system too will grow with it.
Several other manufactures very recently started to offer integration with Amazon Alexa. Systems like Ford’s SYNC 3 AppLink software can allow your Amazon Alexa to start your vehicle, lock and unlock the doors, adjust cabin temperature, and turn on lights. BMW, Hyundai, and Nissan are next to feature these and other similar options with the help of Alexa’s connection.
Amazon’s Competition is Not Far Behind
Google too wants its share of the automotive market. A similar scheme designed for the automotive world, an expansion of their Google Assistant system, is expected to be revealed soon. Cars equipped with Android Auto are rumored to soon be compatible with your personal Google Assistant, and will perform similar tasks to those Amazon is promising. It’s a party for all really, as there are now over a thousand third-party products out there that will also integrate with the Alexa and Google. The options are essentially endless.
“Our vision for Alexa is that she should be everywhere a customer might need her – at home, in the office, on phones – and in cars. This integration means that customers can interact with Alexa, virtually anywhere they drive.”