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Industry News Digest: Voice Assistant From Spotify and New Smart Speaker From IKEA
IKEA and Sonos introduce new Symfonisk smart speakers
According to IKEA’s recent Instagram tease, the furniture giant and Sonos might soon launch a joint SYMFONISK lineup comprised of two items. The multifunctional silhouette is priced at $179 and serves as a cylindrical Sonos speaker, doubling up as a lamp. There is also a hidden speaker that can be fixed to a wall with or without a frame like a piece of art. Via Hypebeast.
Facebook launched a Q&A platform with audio features
Facebook has released its own take on the audio-only social network Clubhouse — a new Q&A platform called Hotline that pairs social audio with live streaming. Right now a website for the service is live: you can sign in via Twitter, join a waitlist and apply to host your own show. Via The Verge.
Spotify launches its own voice assistant on iOS and Android
Spotify now has an in-app voice assistant users can operate hands-free, building on the existing voice search function. To use the feature, users need to grant Spotify permission to access the microphone, say «Hey, Spotify» wake word, and then ask the app to play a song, playlist, or music from a certain artist. Via Yahoo.
Alexa introduces a helpline for the visually impaired in Britain
Amazon has launched a new Alexa feature that helps blind and partially sighted users in Britain to connect with services and useful information from the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB). The new skill connects to the long-standing call center purely by voice command, instead of requiring going online or dialing a phone. Via Voicebot.ai.