Internet emergency alerts: Alexa now supports "Announcements"
sean at donelan.com
Wed May 29 17:19:49 UTC 2019
Amazon has announced a new API for its voice services, i.e. Alexa. This
enables one-way Alexa announcements within a household and from Apps
without prompting by the user.
Although the Amazon blog did not comment about the use of Amazon
Announcements concerning Emergency Alert System broadcasts (e.g. tornado
warnings, evacuation alerts, wildfires, etc), this newe API may solve the
previous constrain that Alexa devices only responded to user interaction.
Previously, Alexa speakers could tell you there was a tornado warning
when you asked for the current weather or passively show weather warnings
on Amazon Echo Show screens. Alexa would not proactively announce
warnings until you prompted it.
I don't know if Amazon will leave it up to 3rd parties to create Apps with
emergency alert announcements.
Google Search passively shows some emergency alerts at the top of its
search pages based on your location. Google Assistant devices do not
appear to react to emergency alerts.
Netflix, Hulu and other streaming apps are likely the wrong layer for
emergency alerts. Alerts should likely be part of the device management
layer, to provide consistent behavior across apps instead of app by app.
More information about the NANOG