Amazon’s Alexa Can Now Join You In Your Car
The smart home assistant has existed the home and is getting in your vehicle thanks to a new Logitech device
Logitech, maker of the ZeroTouch, is adding Amazon support to its car assistant app. With the app and the Logitech-branded car mount, a smartphone can be turned into a capable digital car computer.
The Amazon integration opens a lot of new capabilities for the ZeroTouch. It can now do what Alexa was built to do on top of its own programmed features. This includes play music from services like Pandora and Spotify, provide information about the weather, broadcast quick snippets of news from leading outlets and of course, it lets you easily order products off the Amazon catalogue.
The new feature comes as an update to the existing smartphone app for the Logitech ZeroTouch system. With just a simple update, existing owners of Logitech’s car phone holder can start having conversations with Amazon’s assistant during their drives.
Unfortunately, the ZeroTouch system is only available to Android phone users.
The ZeroTouch dock and app combo is designed to work together seamlessly. The dock works through strong magnets, with a strip attached to the smartphone. To automatically launch the ZeroTouch app, an embedded Bluetooth LE chip signals the smartphone. Instead of swiping and clicking, users will only have to put their hand on top of the phone. The ambient sensors will detect the presence and automatically start listening after an audible ‘beep.’
It’s not just the dock that is different. The ZeroTouch system does not rely on providers like Google Now; Logitech built its own cloud voice recognition software and smart assistant. With the addition of Alexa, Logitech is fast-tracking the addition of more features to the app. However, since Alexa wasn’t really designed for work on the road, functions are limited specifically for driving. But as consolation, users get to control their thermostats and control their smartphones while they are still on the road with a true zero-touch.
The Logitech ZeroTouch car mounts sell for $60 (vent mount) and $80 (cup holder mount).