Huawei is happy to announce that its integration with Alexa is finally coming into fruition. Today, Huawei will push an OTA to Huawei Mate 9 customers in the US. This update will enable the Huawei Alexa app, where you’ll be able to tell your commands to Alexa.
You’ll have access to Alexa’s library of commands and skills that enable Alexa to work with third party platforms like Philips Hue bulbs or IFTTT automation recipes. You’ll also be able to shop on Amazon with your voice (if you’re a Prime member), ask for your flash briefing, podcasts, calendar events, weather, and basic trivia.
There are a few limitation with Alexa on the Mate 9 that you should be aware of. For now, the only way to summon Alexa is by first launching the Huawei Alexa app on your Mate 9. Only then will you be able to either use the “Alexa” hot word or tap the mic button to speak your command.
Also, you won’t be able to listen to music like you can on the Amazon Echo, nor can you ask it to play movies and shows on a Fire TV device. Finally, when asking for weather while on the road, you’ll need to specify which city every time. Since Alexa only has a “home location”, it doesn’t keep track of where you are.
Huawei has told us that it does intend to fix the first limitation “within the next year”, so that your Mate 9 would always be listening for the hot word. This one would take several months, though. There aren’t any commands that are specific to the Mate 9, but Huawei tells us to look for these in the next iteration of the Mate 9.
“Adding Alexa to the Mate 9 seemed like a no brainer. We have four mics with noise cancellation [on the Mate 9], this tech will help a lot Alexa to hear the commands easily from different angles”… –Huawei PR
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