Vice President of Amazon Alexa Steve Rabuchin speaks during a keynote address by CEO of Huawei Consumer Business Group Richard Yu (not pictured) delivers a keynote address at CES 2017 at The Venetian Las Vegas on January 5, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. CES, the world's largest annual consumer technology trade show, runs through January 8 and features 3,800 exhibitors showing off their latest products and services to more than 165,000 attendees.
(Photo : Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Amazon's Alexa, it appears, has taken the lead in the digital assistant race. It appeared on almost every possible device unveiled at the CES 2017 this week even on Google's Android operating system.
Amazon Alexa digital assistant is a CES 2017 scene-stealer. Competition to develop the best virtual assistant has been tight over the past year but Amazon looks to be winning it with the Alexa. Alexa managed to grabbed attention at the CES 2017 even if Amazon wasn't in attendance, showing up in car systems, robots, lamps, washing machines (yes, washing machines) and even on smartphones running Google's very Android operating system.
Alexa allows devices to respond to voice commands and wouldn't be what it is today if not for the Amazon Echo. The Amazon Echo is an internet-connected speaker able to answer what you ask of it and run applications. The Amazon Echo was a success among consumers with Amazon having sold over 5.1 million Echo devices since its launch in 2014.
Industry analysts believe that voice-powered virtual assistants will replace touchscreens and keyboards as interaction tools. Pretty soon, the primary method of interaction among users and devices would be through an actual conversation.
Though Google did come up with the Google Home to rival the Alexa, it opted to debut its virtual assistant on its own hardware. This allowed the Amazon Alexa to take the lead as it is available on any available platform unlike how Siri is to the iPhone or Cortana to Microsoft devices.
This doesn't mean that Google has lost the race for the best virtual assistant. Google still has the best internet search technology and needs to make up for losing the lead by making Google Home available on its own OS on every possible phone in the least amount of time.
Google has so much time to catch up given that the year has just started. Consumers can expect to be a one tight virtual assistant race between Google Home and Amazon Alex along with Cortana and Siri.