Developer Console

Features of VSK (VSK Echo Show)

Echo Show provides users with capabilities such as Login and Skill Enablement, Quick Play, Playback Control, Channel Navigation, Search, Browse, and Video Home.

Features and Sample Utterances

Integrating the VSK for Echo Show users provides the following capabilities:

Feature Sample Utterance
Login and Skill Enablement No utterances needed. When users say "Alexa, open <video provider>" or "Alexa, play <title> on <video provider>," Alexa prompts customers to enable the video skill.
Quick Play "Alexa, play <movie>", "Alexa, play <TV show> on <video provider>", "Alexa, watch <TV show> on <video provider>"
Channel Navigation "Alexa, tune to <channel>"
Playback Controls "Alexa, pause", "Alexa, fast forward"
Search "Alexa, find comedies on <video provider>"
Browse "Alexa, show me videos", "Alexa, open <video provider>"
Video Home "Alexa, show me videos", "Alexa, go to Video Home", "Alexa, Video Home."

Video Home

Video Home is automatically built into Echo Show devices. Customers bring up the Video Home page when they say utterances such as "Alexa, show me videos" or "Alexa, go to Video Home". A list of all the video skills linked to this device is presented to the user.

The Video Home page has a tile for each video provider, and it responds to both voice and touch interactions. If customers select an enabled video provider's skill, Alexa launches that provider's landing page. If customers select a disabled skill, Alexa initiates the skill-enablement process.


Customers must enable your video skill on their Echo Show device before they can access your video content. As a video partner, you choose whether account linking is required for your customers to enable your skill. When you require account linking, the customers must log in to your service to access your content.

VSK uses OAuth 2.0 to enable account linking on Echo Show devices. You provide an authorization URL that Alexa surfaces for customers to log in. For information about OAuth 2.0, see Understand Account Linking.

You can add an option to your login page for customers to start a new subscription or create an account. The customer can disable your video skill at any time in the Alexa app.

Skill Enablement

On the device, customers can enable a video skill in the following ways:

  • By saying, "Alexa, open <video provider>."
  • By saying, "Alexa, play <title> on <video provider>." When the customer explicitly targets the video provider in a search, play, or channel navigation utterance, Alexa prompts customers to enable the video skill.
  • By tapping on a video provider's icon in the Video Home page of the device.

In the Alexa app, customers can enable video skills through the Music, Video & Books section, or in the Alexa Skills Store. See Enable Alexa Skills for details. If account linking is required, the app prompts the customer to log in. If account linking is not required, the app asks the customer to confirm they want to enable the skill.

To enable the video skill on all Echo Show devices in their Alexa account, customers need to sign in only once.

Quick Play

Customers can play content from a provider choosing by title, media type, genre, actor, and so on. They can select content by either being explicit or implicit. Explicit means that the customer's request includes the provider. Implicit requests do not.

Playback takes place on a web player that you control. If a customer has your skill enabled on an Echo Show device, Alexa makes a call to your AWS Lambda with a play request. You receive play requests for the following scenarios:

  • Explicit play requests: "Alexa play Bosch on Prime Video"
  • Implicit play requests when the video provider is active or exclusive (available only through one provider): "Alexa, play Bosch"

If the customer makes an implicit play request (not referencing the provider name), and the title is available on multiple providers, Alexa asks the customer to disambiguate the request by responding "I can play that on <video provider 1> or <video provider 2>, which would you like?"

Channel Navigation

Customers can navigate to the different channels offered by a video provider with explicit or implicit utterances, even if the offering includes only one linear channel.

You receive channel navigation requests for the following scenarios (assuming the content is in your catalog):

  • Explicit requests for channels: "Alexa, tune to <channel> on <video provider>"
  • Implicit requests for channels when the video provider is active: "Alexa, tune to <channel>"

Alexa distinguishes between video providers by asking the user "I can play that on <video provider 1> or <video provider 2>. Which would you like?"

Playback Controls

Customers can use both voice and touch to control playback. The following table shows all the video skill playback controls on Echo Show devices.

Playback Control User Experience
"Alexa, pause," "Alexa, stop" Pauses playback
"Alexa, play," "Alexa, resume" Plays or resumes playback
"Alexa, fast-forward" Fast forwards 10 seconds
"Alexa, rewind" Rewinds 10 seconds
"Alexa, fast-forward [duration]" Fast forwards by the specified amount of time. For example, "Alexa, fast-forward 2 minutes."
"Alexa, rewind by [duration]" Rewinds by the specified amount of time. For example, "Alexa, rewind 2 minutes."
"Alexa, next" Moves to the next title
"Alexa, previous" Moves to the previous title
"Alexa, closed captions on", "Alexa, closed captions off" Turns closed captions on / off

Customers can also initiate these commands through on-screen controls in the web player.

Customers can search for content from a video provider by title, media type, genre, actor, and so on, either by being explicit or implicit.

You receive search requests for the following scenarios (assuming the content is available in your catalog):

  • Explicit search requests for titles: "Alexa, search for Bosch on Prime Video."
  • Explicit search requests without titles: "Alexa, show me TV shows on Prime Video."
  • Implicit search requests with titles when the video provider is active, or exclusive search requests for titles: "Alexa, show me Bosch."
  • Implicit search requests without titles when the video provider is active: "Alexa, show me TV shows."

When more than one video provider can tune to a channel, Alexa disambiguates between providers.

Alexa does not show results that combine titles from multiple video providers. If more than one video provider can offer search results in one category (for example, "Alexa, show me movies."), Alexa disambiguates across providers and shows search results from the provider that the customer chooses.


Customers can browse your video content with utterances such as "Alexa, open <video provider>", or by tapping on the video provider's icon in the Video Home page. These browsing actions take customers to your landing page.

Customers can navigate the landing page through voice or touch. With voice, they can say "Alexa, scroll down." Or they can make selections such as "Alexa, go to Trending now."

Note the following about the landing page:

  • It uses a voice- and touch-optimized template that you can configure with your logo, a hero title, and a list of categories of your choosing.
  • It includes a More Categories section that the customer can access by voice or touch. More Categories displays tiles of video categories that you provide. Examples of categories you can provide include Recently Added, Watch List, Trending Now, Because you watched <title>, seasonal content, and so on.
  • When the customer selects a category, Alexa displays individual titles included in that category, in the same template that is used for Search Results.

Here is an example landing page for a video skill:

Sample landing page
Sample landing page

PIN-Protected Playback

PIN-Protected Playback is built into Echo Show devices. It allows customers to set a personal identification number (PIN) and restrict playback of content from any video provider.

Customers can use this PIN to set parental controls. If customers set a PIN for a video provider, Alexa prompts to enter that PIN every time in order to access content from that provider.

Next Step

See Web Player Requirements.

Last updated: Oct 29, 2020