CES 2018: Amazon pulls the Alexa trigger on PC

With CES kicking off in full force today, perhaps one of the most significant announcements has already been made: Alexa is headed to PC.

Acer, Asus, Lenovo and HP have all announced plans to integrate Amazon’s digital assistant into Windows 10 PCs in an attempt to challenge Microsoft’s own Cortana assistant.

The not-insignificant news doesn’t exactly come as a surprise. At CES 12 months ago we saw everyone and their dog put Alexa in their products (even if it didn’t exactly need it). Alexa on PC was the next logical step for the little voice that could.

In order to get it up and running, a special Alexa app for Windows will be launched in the Spring. It’s not going to be available on every PC mind. Most PC vendors only seem to be integrating Alexa on devices that are capable of far-field voice recognition, such as the Acer Spin and the HP Pavilion Wave – a desktop PC that already looks like it could be mistaken for a large speaker. 

This news is not to be mistaken with the partnership between Microsoft and Amazon that was announced last year. The companies promised that they would integrate Alexa and Cortana together by the end of 2017, but that window has come and gone with barely a peep. 

More Alexa news is expected out of CES this week, but it is Google who is expected to dominate column inches with its announcements. The show floor is covered with ‘Hey, Google’ signs, so whatever Google comes up with you can count on it being big.

For all the latest from CES, make sure you stay tuned to PCR.

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