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January 08, 2018Rachel Bennett
Today, we the launch the first single System-on-Chip (SoC) development kits for the Alexa Voice Service (AVS). We are excited to broaden the portfolio of development kits for AVS to include complete single-chip solutions that provide a simplified architecture, high performance, and low total BOM cost. These new System Development Kits for AVS are ideal for OEMs and ODMs looking for a complete solution to build Alexa-enabled products.
A typical system designed for AVS requires a microphone and speaker with three processing blocks: an audio front end (AFE) to clean up the input speech, a wake word engine (WWE) to recognize the voice command for “Alexa,” and an AVS client to send utterances to and receive directives from the cloud.
Existing Audio Front End Development Kits for AVS utilize a dedicated digital signal processor (DSP) to implement the AFE processing block, while leveraging a Raspberry Pi to host the WWE and AVS client for prototyping purposes. This provides a modular solution to easily integrate voice capture abilities into connected products. OEMs can use a qualified solution to easily add Alexa voice capabilities, and choose the production-ready SoC they prefer for their final product.
System Development Kits for AVS offer a complete, end-to-end system reference design for building AVS products. This category includes AFE development kits that are also available in qualified bundles with production-ready SoCs. The new System Development Kits for AVS that we’re introducing today have SoCs that perform all three processing block functions on a single chip. They allow OEMs to leverage existing SoC relationships and existing infrastructure, while minimizing the impact on their design cycles. The single-chip SoC development kits in this category do not require an external DSP.
“By qualifying these first single SoC solutions, we’re expanding the portfolio of development kits for AVS in an important way for OEMs and ODMs building Alexa-enabled products,” said Priya Abani, Director, Amazon Alexa. “These dev kits reduce the cost of integrating Alexa, as well as accelerate time to market due to a near-production-ready architecture that streamlines technology integration and accelerates product development.”
The first single-chip SoC solutions qualified by Amazon are development kits from Qualcomm, Amlogic, and Allwinner:
Our vision at Amazon is to bring Alexa to customers everywhere - at their homes, in the office, on-the-go and everywhere in between. Voice will be woven into our daily lives and will extend beyond our Echo family of devices. As Alexa continues to be directly integrated into the brands customers know and love, we want to make it incredibly easy for developers and manufacturers to build Alexa into their products.
We continue to work with leading technology providers to bring simpler ways to build Alexa-enabled products which ultimately offers more choices to customers. See our full portfolio of qualified Development Kits for AVS.
The Alexa service is always getting smarter both for features, and for natural language understanding and accuracy. As a developer, your product also gains access to new capabilities with Alexa through API updates, feature launches, and custom skills. Learn how AVS can add rich voice-powered experiences to your connected products on the AVS Developer Portal.
Have questions? We’re here to help. Visit us on the AVS Forum or Alexa GitHub to speak with one of our experts.