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November 28, 2017Jeff Blankenburg
Editor's note: the expanded preview of notifications is now closed. Thank you for your interest, and keep your eye on the Alexa developer blog for more information in the future.
Earlier this year we announced a limited developer preview of notifications in Alexa skills. Today, we are expanding the developer preview: you can apply to participate and help us improve the feature before we make it generally available.
The notifications feature gives Alexa the capability to alert customers with information that’s important to them, and is already available for Amazon Shopping and select skills.
Customers opt in to notifications per skill using the Amazon Alexa app. After opting in to notifications on a given skill, the customer is alerted when there is new information to retrieve—with both a sound and an on-device indicator (LED or on-screen equivalent) on their Amazon Echo, Echo Dot, Echo Show, or their Alexa-enabled third party device. The customer can simply ask, “Alexa, what did I miss?”, or “Alexa, read my notifications,” and Alexa will read the new notifications. Users must opt in before a skill can send them notifications, and can disable or suppress notifications using the Alexa app or by putting devices in Do Not Disturb mode.
We believe that it is a privilege when customers provide permission to be notified, and that the most valuable notifications are those that are personalized, relevant, and timely. Our goal is to delight customers with every notification. With this goal in mind:
Several developers have already launched skills that provide personalized, relevant, and timely notifications:
Bring your big idea to life with Alexa and earn perks through our tiered rewards system. US developers, publish a skill before the end of the year, and receive an Alexa developer hoodie. If 100 customers use your skill in its first 30 days in the Alexa Skills Store, you can also apply to receive a free Echo Dot to help you make Alexa even smarter. If you need inspiration, consider creating a holiday-themed skill to get into the holiday spirit. If you're not in the US, check out our promotions in the UK, Germany, and India. Learn more about our promotion and start building today.