Microsoft and Amazon to bring Skype calling to Alexa enabled devices
Microsoft has partnered with Amazon to bring the Skype calling feature of Amazon Alexa devices. The feature will enable Amazon Echo and Fire devices to make and receive Skype calls including even paid SkypeOut calls to phone numbers globally.
Microsoft has also said that they will soon bring an update for the Skype app on PCs, Xbox One and mobile devices which will help users connect with their Skype contacts and phone numbers using Alexa. As of now, the company is yet to reveal a rollout schedule for the new calling support feature for Alexa. But, in a blog post they did mention that the rollout will begin later this year.
To make outgoing calls with the help of this new feature, users can simply say “Alexa, call Jimmy on Skype,” or when a call is coming in Alexa will announce it as “Jimmy is calling you on Skype”. It is yet to be seen if the integration will also bring the capability of making video calls or not on devices like the Echo Spot.
Last year, Amazon and Microsoft partnered up to closely integrate both companies digital voice assistants, Alexa and Cortana respectively. This move was made by both the companies to compete with Google’s Assistant and Apple’s Siri, which already come pre-loaded on Android and iOS devices, respectively.
The partnership initially brought Alexa integration on Windows 10 PCs, followed by a public preview of Cortana integration on Alexa enabled speakers recently. Additionally, Microsoft has introduced Alexa support on the Xbox One Insiders, and will be rolling out the feature to all Xbox One users in the near future.