Amazon already makes the software behind Alexa available to any device manufacturer, through their Alexa Voice Service (AVS) development kit, but now they’re making the Echo hardware available too. Amazon today announced that device manufacturers wanting to add Alexa capabilities can have access to their “high-performance far-field microphone array and voice processing technology.” The hardware-based reference solution includes the same 7-microphone array found in Echo products, wake word recognition, beamforming, noise reduction, and echo cancellation.
This will make it easier for new devices to be created by third-parties with the same always-listening capabilities of the Amazon Echo and Echo Dot, as long as those manufactures include Alexa. Most Alexa implementations require the user to press a button first, but soon we should start seeing more hands-free devices emerge. The hardware dev kit is available to OEMs through an invite-only program.