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Image credit: Cherlynn Low / Engadget

Alexa skills can now collaborate with each other

The feature is limited to printing and reservation booking for now.
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Cherlynn Low / Engadget

Amazon is working on a way to connect various Alexa skills so that the assistant can perform multiple related tasks without the user having to repeat themselves. The company is calling the feature skill connections, and Amazon is previewing it with developers now. Here's how Amazon says skill connections could work. Say you use Alexa to buy some concert tickets at the last minute. With skill connections, the skill you used to buy the tickets could then offer to book you a taxi ride to the event, and it could just past the location information off to the taxi-booking skill for you rather than you having to look up the address, invoke the taxi skill and repeat the address yourself.

As part of the preview, developers can integrate printing, restaurant reservations and taxi reservations into their skills, and those services are provided by skills from HP, OpenTable and Uber, respectively. Amazon says Epson and Canon printing skills will be available soon as well.

Allrecipes is already taking advantage of the HP printing skill, allowing users to print recipes. "Adding printing capability enhances our skill's overall experience for consumers," said Corbin de Rubertis, head of innovation at Allrecipes' parent company Meredith Digital. "Now home cooks can easily print the recipes they want using the Allrecipes skill on Alexa, all within the same conversation."

Developers interested in taking part can apply here.

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