What's New in the Alexa Skills Kit: April 2020 Release Roundup

Leo Ohannesian Apr 10, 2020
Release Roundup Developer Console News Voice User Interface Productivity Multimodal

Editor's Note: Our monthly release roundup series showcases the latest in Alexa Skills Kit developer tools and features that can make your skills easier to manage, simpler to deploy, and more engaging for your customers. Build with these new capabilities to enable your Alexa skills to drive brand or revenue objectives.

In this roundup we share details about the new features and tools released for skill developers last month, including a new look ASK website, intent confidence in your skill analytics, and the timers API.

1. A new look for the ASK website

Last week, we released a new version of the Alexa Skills Kit website. It includes a new introduction to ASK, a new feature taxonomy that helps you find the right feature, a page to help you stay up to date on the latest, and a new business page that lets you see how others have used Alexa skills to grow their business. Take a look and let us know what you think!

2. Use audit logs to retrieve the history of all the skill-building operations performed in an Alexa developer account

Use the Audit Logs API to get logs that show the history of Skill Management API (SMAPI) calls made in your vendor account. The logs include information about each operation including the timestamp, response code, and source. Check out the documentation. 

3. Add visuals to your skills with the next version of the Alexa Presentation Language (APL).

Starting today, you can use the next version of the Alexa Presentation Language (APL) with support for new Alexa responsive components and templates, dynamic data sources, new time primitives, and conditional commands. Read the announcement here

4. Measure your skill's intent confidence in the Analytics tab of the Developer Console to improve your interaction model

Your intent confidence score indicates how your skill interaction model is performing. With this analytics metric, you can view number of utterances resolved to an intent with high, medium and low confidence. Read the blog. 

5. Add timers capabilities to your skills with the Timers API

With the Alexa Timers API, you can integrate timers directly into your skill so that the user doesn't have to go outside the skill to set a timer when starting a recipe, doing a workout, or more. Check out the announcement. 

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

Sensitivity tuning for the Fallback Intent allows your skill to better respond to customer requests that are not supported by your skill’s custom interaction model. Changing the setting fallbackIntentSensitivity has the highest impact for skills that receive a wide range of unsupported requests that map to custom intents. Check out the documentation.