Just a few days until the annual Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) and Amazon adds Apple calendar support for Alexa users. While Alexa has supported Google Calendar integration since launch and added Outlook support earlier this year, Apple calendar users on iPhone and iCloud have been left waiting.
MacRumors reports that the new service is available in the US, UK and Germany. The new feature requires the user to set-up two-factor authentication in their iPhone security settings before configuring it to work with Alexa.
Your Calendar is Available To Others
Another item also appeared recently on the calendar settings screen. There is now a note that reads:
Content from your calendar accounts will be available to anyone using your Alexa devices.
Until Amazon introduces voice signature or a PIN for switching accounts, all data is accessible by anyone in speaking range of an Alexa-enabled device. Google has addressed this by introducing a voice signature that recognizes different users. When asked “what’s on my calendar,” Google will only offer the information if it matches the voice to the user. Otherwise it will say, it doesn’t recognize the voice and to try again. This is one of the few areas where Alexa trails a rival in features and is an important gap in the current offering.
A Cross Platform Utility
The introduction of Apple Calendar integration reinforces Alexa’s position as the only voice assistant supporting all three leading productivity suites. Google, Microsoft and Apple all have competing voice assistants and hope to lock in their current users before they migrate to Alexa instead of Assistant, Cortana or Siri. The announcement is another example of Alexa leading the pack in user features. As always, Amazon is pressing its early market advantage.
Amazon also has a habit of making new feature announcements related to its rivals immediately prior to events where competitors will be discussing their own voice assistants. Calendar integration will be one feature that Apple can’t hold against Amazon during its expected unveiling of an Echo competitor during WWDC next week.