What Is the Alexa Connect Kit?
Alexa Connect Kit (ACK) is a managed service that makes it easy to connect your product to Alexa.
With ACK, you don't need to write an Alexa skill, manage a cloud service, or develop complex network and security firmware to connect your product to Alexa. Instead, you integrate an ACK module into your product and pay a one-time, per-device fee. ACK provides managed services, software, and tools for the ongoing development and management of your Alexa-connected products.
After integrating with ACK, your customers benefit from Alexa device control and other features, such as Amazon Frustration-Free Setup (FFS) and Amazon Dash Replenishment Service (DRS).
To build a prototype, purchase an ACK Development Kit and complete the steps outlined in Get Started with the Development Kit for ACK.
What can you build with ACK?
Use the Alexa Connect Kit to build smart home products that support the Alexa Smart Home API. Examples include lighting and electrical products (switches, outlets, plugs, power strips), small and large domestic appliances (microwaves, coffee machines, kettles, dishwashers), home environment products (fans, purifiers, air conditioners, thermostats), and more.
For more example products, see Example Products Built with Alexa Connect Kit.
Lighting, switches, and plugs
Create voice-first experiences that provide a more intuitive way to interact with lights, switches, and plugs. For example, your customers can control your product by saying, "Alexa, dim the bedroom light to 50 percent" or "Alexa, turn on the Christmas tree."
Create voice-first experiences that provide a more intuitive way to interact with microwaves, ovens, and other kitchen appliances. For example, your customers can control your product by saying, "Alexa, microwave the popcorn" or "Alexa, cook chicken for two minutes."
Fans and air conditioners
Create voice-first experiences that provide a more intuitive way to interact with fans or other air purifier devices, such as air conditioners. For example, your customers can control your product by saying, "Alexa, set the bedroom fan speed to high" or "Alexa, set the air conditioning to 75."
How is ACK different from other Alexa services?
Alexa provides multiple development options to build and control your smart home devices. These options include the Alexa Connect Kit (ACK), Alexa Smart Home Skills, and Alexa Voice Service (AVS). You can choose the development option best suited to your device type, development preference, and the experience you want to create. For details, see Alexa-Enabled Smart Home Development Options.
ACK offers the following benefits to you and your customers.
- Quick prototyping – Use the ACK Development Kit and provided reference code to add Alexa control to your device.
- No cloud management – Run your devices on an Amazon-managed ACK cloud instead of building your own.
- Minimal coding required – Connect existing device logic to a pre-configured ACK module.
- Simplified device maintenance – Publish updates to your device fleet and collect device logs and metrics.
- Predictable cost structure – Pay a non-recurring, per-unit fee.
- Simplified setup – Register your device seamlessly with Amazon Frustration-Free Setup.
- Familiar interaction – Control devices with Alexa voice commands and the Alexa app.
- Reliable service – Backed by Amazon-managed cloud services and kept up-to-date through seamless over-the-air (OTA) updates.
- Advanced capabilities – Automate devices with Alexa capabilities, such as routines.
ACK-based products benefit from the following features. For more details on how these features work with ACK, including which are mandatory and which are optional, see Device Features.
- Out-of-the-box Alexa control – Use the Alexa app or an Alexa-enabled product, such as an Amazon Echo Dot or an Alexa Built-in device, to control your product.
- Frustration-Free Setup/Wi-Fi Simple Setup – ACK-based products use Amazon Frustration-Free Setup to connect devices to a Wi-Fi network and register them with Alexa. This makes it easier for your customers to register their devices with Amazon and Alexa services. Frustration-Free Setup and Wi-Fi Simple setup offer zero-touch setup, barcode registration, and customer-guided device registration flows. The use of Frustration-Free Setup is mandatory on all ACK-based devices and is required for device operation.
- Logs and metrics* – As part of the ACK Analytics Service, Amazon collects and analyzes operational metrics from your ACK-based devices to ensure optimal health, security, and connection status. You can use the Amazon tools available through the ACK Analytics Service to define, collect, store, and view additional logs and metrics for your ACK-based devices. You're a controller of the data you collect and store from your ACK devices. Amazon is a processor of this data, and can use it only to provide you the ACK managed services.
- OTA firmware updates* – Update your ACK module and host microcontroller firmware (HMCU) over the air to devices in the field.
- Certification – Certify your device with the Works with Alexa (WWA) and Frustration-Free Setup programs.
Amazon Dash Replenishment Service* – Enable automatic reordering of the consumables for your product with Amazon DRS. For more details, see About Dash Replenishment.Note: *Available only to commercial manufacturers.
ACK product components
The following list describes the main components that power an ACK device. For details on how they work together, along with descriptions of other important components, see How Alexa Connect Kit Works.
- ACK module – An Amazon-managed hardware component that you integrate into your ACK-based device. This module runs the Amazon firmware that connects your device to the ACK managed services.
- ACK Device SDK – An Amazon-provided SDK that runs on your device microcontroller and handles Alexa commands, manages your device states, and implements ACK features, such as OTA updates and device logs and metrics.
- ACK managed services – As your service provider and data processor, Amazon delivers cloud-based ACK managed services, and partner-specific and device-specific backend functionality. This functionality includes the collection and analysis of device operational logs by Amazon to ensure the health, security, and connection status of your devices. ACK managed services also include Alexa capability management tools, and tools for you to define, collect, and store additional logs and metrics for your ACK-based devices.
- ACK developer console – The ACK developer console is an Amazon-managed online portal that allows you to configure and manage your ACK-based products and devices. With the ACK developer console, you can view device registration and download the ACK Device SDK and other resources.
Last updated: Jan 31, 2023