Customers on tens of millions of Alexa-enabled devices are increasingly using voice interfaces as a hands-free way to manage their lives, and keep track of items to buy and things to do. Alexa provides a set of built-in list capabilities that customers use to manage their Shopping and To-do lists. In addition, customers can create their own lists for any purpose or occasion.
Now, you can make it easier for customers to keep track of their tasks, shopping needs and other important items through your Alexa skill. With Lists Read and Lists Write permissions, you can create new lists, read, add, and delete items to any Alexa list from within your skill. For example, if you had a drink recipe skill, customers could ask Alexa to send the ingredients for their chosen drink to the Alexa Shopping list, or to any other list of their choice—all without leaving your skill.
The List Skill API comprises of Lists Read, Lists Write permissions and Lists Events. Lists Read permissions allows read-only access to any of the customer’s Alexa lists so that your skill can read list items on command. Lists Write permissions enable customers to add and remove items from their Alexa lists using your skill or create new lists. Lists Events, available for list skills, allows you to receive notifications when customers add or remove items to their lists on Alexa. This enables you to understand and react to changes that happen to lists from top-level utterances on Alexa (for example: “Alexa, add bananas to my shopping list”) without building a voice interaction model to handle customer requests. You can use Lists Events to enable two-way sync between Alexa Lists and an external web/mobile interface, to ensure lists are updated across all channels.
Lists Read, Write permissions and Lists Events are available worldwide for developers building skills in US English, UK English, and German languages.
If you have an existing Alexa custom skill, or are building a new custom skill, you can easily integrate with Alexa lists by following these steps:
To subscribe to Lists Events:
Once a customer grants permissions, your skill can access the customer’s Alexa shopping and to do lists. You can use the Lists Read and Lists Write permissions as part of a response to a voice interaction (in-session), or in an out-of-session flow, initiated by your skill. When you add permissions to your skill, you’ll want to save the state of the customer’s previous session to ensure the customer experience is consistent when they reopen your skill and want to access or change the list. You may also want to link your system’s account to Alexa to ensure your customer has a consistent experience across devices. You can find best practices on account linking and preserving state in your Alexa skill in our technical documentation.