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Custom Skills

Create your own voice experience and deliver nearly any use case. You can publish skills in more than 20 categories including including games, productivity, local experiences, and more.

How Custom Skills Work

When you build a custom skill, you define your own interaction model, or voice use interface, rather than relying on one provided by Alexa. Your custom interaction model specifies how customers' spoken input maps to the requests, or intents, that your skill can handle. When a customer speaks to your skill, Alexa uses you interaction model to determine the underlying customer intent, and sends it to your skill application logic.

Key Features of Custom Interaction Models

Intents

Intents represent the customer requests that your skill can handle. You define the intents for the unique functions that your skill provides, and can also take advantage of built-in intents for common actions such as stopping, canceling, and asking for help.

Slots

Intents can optionally have arguments, or variables, called slots. You provide a name and a slot type for each slot in your interaction model. The slot type contains a list of representative values for the slot in order to improve recognition accuracy. You can use a built-in slot type for commonly used arguments such as dates and numbers, or define your own.

Sample Utterances

Sample utterances are spoken phrases that customers will use with your skill. When you design your interaction model, you specify the phrases customers will use throughout your skill experience and how Alexa should map these to your skill intents.

Dialog Model

You can optionally use a dialog model to simplify the code you need to write to collect and confirm the slots needed in complex interactions. When you use a dialog model, you tell Alexa how to manage a multi-turn conversation with the customer to collect the information you need, and can delegate the dialog to Alexa.

ASK SDKs

Use the Alexa Skills Kit SDKs for Node.js, Python, and Java to reduce complexity in how you receive and respond to requests from Alexa. 

Understand How to Build Custom Skills

Get an overview of the Alexa Skills Kit (ASK) and how you can use it to build custom skills.

Explore Example Custom Skill Categories

You can use the custom skill type to deliver nearly any use case. 

Categories Include

View a full list of skill categories in the Alexa Skills Store. 

Go to Alexa Skills Store

Learn about Skill Categories with Special Requirements or Tools

Game Skills

Pioneers of voice games are imagining a whole new way to engage players, feeding their curiosity with new ways to play—including interactive adventures, family-friendly games, and quiz games.

Healthcare Skills

The Alexa Skills Kit now enables select Covered Entities and their Business Associates, subject to the U.S. Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), to build Alexa skills that transmit and receive protected health information as part of an invite-only program.

Kid Skills

Build fun and educational voice experiences for kids.

Latest Feature Updates for Custom Skills

                

Date Name Summary Locale Availability Links Release Type

6/2/2020

Alexa Hosted Skills Import

You can now import Git repositories to create Alexa Hosted Skills

All

Documentation

GA

5/28/2020

ASR Evaluation

Use ASR Evaluation to measure your skill’s speech recognition with audio files

All

Documentation

GA

4/16/2020

Long-form Speaking Style, Speaking Styles for Select Polly Voices and Additional Polly Voices

Create engaging voice experiences with a new Alexa speaking style, speaking styles in Amazon Polly voices and additional Polly voices

en-US , All

Blog

Documentation

Generally Available

3/26/2020

Sensitivity Tuning for Fallback Intent

Sensitivity tuning lets you tune your skill model to respond to more customer requests with the Fallback Intent

US, DE

Documentation

Generally Available

Get Started with Custom Skills

Ready to build? Follow our beginner tutorial for custom skills, then start building your skill with the Alexa Skills Kit..