Amazon Alexa and Echo set for Febuary launch

EAR WE GO Sony's cutting-edge headphones are splash-proof and noise-cancelling

Amazon's Music Unlimited service will also launch in Australia, giving Echo customers access to a library of 45 million songs for free for the first three months, and for $4.99/m after that for use on Echo speakers, and for $11.99/m for full mobile apps and track downloads as well.

Locally, we don't have many of those, but Google's Home and Home Mini speakers certainly made a splash previous year, not only when they were launched, but also around the Christmas period when prices dropped dramatically as the search giant attempted to take over the smart speaker market ahead of time. According to Amazon, more than 10,000 skills are now available in Australia.

Australian diners can now make restaurant reservations without picking up the phone, thanks to a new partnership between Dimmi and Amazon's smart assistant Alexa. The Echo devices will be localised for Australia, from Alexa sounding like an Aussie or Kiwi, to recognising our various local accents, as well as providing local news bulletins, weather forecasts, sports scores and surf reports.

Echo (AU$149): The Echo is the original model.

Pre-orders for Australian Echo speakers are available from today (January 18th, 2018) via Amazon Australia's website, with the devices scheduled to ship early February.

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Telstra have announced their Smart Home devices such as motion sensors, cameras and lightbulbs can be controlled through an Echo devices.

We know that voice services are becoming increasingly important and useful in people's daily lives, and the integration of this technology into our homes through smart speakers and devices will be one of the biggest tech trends in Australia this year.

The ability to place shopping orders via Amazon's new Australian online store, however, will not be available for online shoppers until later on, with Limp saying the feature will come "in the course of time". Technologies like this help us to deliver greater convenience and a richer experience for our customers.

"This is a continuation of the commitment we have to investing in technology solutions that will connect Australians to the most up-to-date employment market and job information, to enable them to make informed career decisions", Seek managing director A/NZ, Michael Ilczynski, said. "We're opening doors for our customers to have access to an incredible catalogue of music, and to be able to listen to some of their favourite artists while using the power of voice in exciting new ways".

Likewise, AGL said customers could check bill information using Alexa once it launching locally.

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