Why Amazon Echo Is Tim Albright’s Favorite Product of 2016

Published: 2016-12-19

I am a control freak, but not in the way you’re thinking of the term.

If you’ve ever seen my desk, or my studio, you’d know everything does not have to be in order. What I mean is, I love control and automation. It is what really hooked me into the audio visual industry and what keeps me excited to this day.

Working with control systems and seeing a system come together is one of the most rewarding things in this industry.

So, when Amazon exhibited at this year’s CEDIA show I was very interested in where the company was going. My expectation was they were going to show the Echo and encourage residential dealers to start integrating it with other IoT devices. My expectations were blown way out of the water.

By the end of the exhibit, you learned that Control4, Crestron, Savant, Lutron, and other control companies integrated seamlessly, or not so much, with the Amazon Echo. The start of the voice control interface had begun.

No, the Echo is not new this year. Neither is Crestron or Control4. But the marriage of a uniquely residential product with established control companies is significant.

Furthermore, Echo wasn’t the only one at the voice control table. Josh.AI also came to CEDIA to demonstrate voice integration with commercial control systems in addition to their own control.

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Voice control will become a mainstay in home control and automation, which means it will find its way into your board rooms sooner rather than later. If the CEO can have this technology in their home, they will want it in their office, too.

Pay attention to what the established control systems are doing with Echo. Get Alexa in your own home or office and play around with programming for the device. In this way you will be ready when your client asks “so, what do you know about voice control.”

Posted in: Insights

Tagged with: CEDIA, Control4, Lutron, Savant

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