Acer and Asus are bringing Amazon Alexa to their laptops

Above HP Pavilion Wave with Alexa for Windows Image Credit HP

Above HP Pavilion Wave with Alexa for Windows Image Credit HP

It's somewhat surprising given that Microsoft has always said it is betting on Cortana working through its existing billions of machines, rather than creating new hardware, and Alexa on Windows 10 would impede the latter's growth. This functionality was supposed to arrive in December, though it hasn't arrived and we haven't seen or heard anything else about the plans.

According to Mehedi Hassan of Thurrott.com, Asus and Lenovo are also building new Windows 10 devices to bring a widen availability of Alexa in the market of Windows PCs.

HP, Asus (Zenbook and Vivobook), Acer (Spin, Swift, Switch and Aspire) and Lenovo have already confirmed that their new lines announced at CES will come with "wake-word" support (in other words, saying Alexa without touching anything) but it won't be universal. The company has developed its own Alexa app which allows users to ask its assistant questions from the Windows desktop. Ditto for the "drop-in" and calling /messaging features.

"By introducing voice services like Alexa paired with Intel Smart Sound Technology, we anticipate that the PC will serve an even more important role in maximizing your productivity, getting the most from your entertainment, and managing the smart home or office", Anand Srivatsa, general manager of Intel's Desktop, Channel and Systems Group, said in the release.

This could be a huge win for Amazon, which is now trying to stay ahead of Google with regard to in-home digital assistants.

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It's no secret that Amazon wants its Alexa voice assistant to be in as many places around the home as possible.

The company also unveiled the Acer V6820M/i 4K UHD projector, which also supports Amazon Alexa. Since all of these devices have a screen or can be connected to a monitor, Alexa will be able to display information in addition to providing audio feedback.

However, this may not mean the end of Cortana, as past year it was hinted that Amazon and Microsoft were looking at working together to allow their voice assistants to communicate with each other.

The two companies haven't announced changes to the original partnership, but it appears Amazon is starting to take another approach to getting Alexa in front of millions of Windows 10 users.

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