It seems that nearly every week another car manufacturer launches a new Alexa skill. Following this month’s announcement from Nissan and Jeep, luxury car maker Infiniti, a division of Nissan, announced it now has two Alexa skills of its own. The Infiniti InTouch Services Alexa skill allows drivers to unlock and lock their vehicle, start and stop the engine, turn the lights on or off and even honk the horn. For older models going back to 2013, the Infiniti Connection skill only allows them to lock or unlock their Infiniti.
Alexa as a Marketing Ploy
However, these features aren’t necessarily new for InTouch Service users. The service already allows users to do the same through a smart phone app for Android or iOS devices. The ability to control your vehicle through Alexa is more of a marketing ploy at this point. One, it sounds cool. Two, Infiniti does not want to get left behind as more auto manufacturers bring telematics integration through Alexa.
While car makers are capitalizing on Alexa’s popularity to attract consumers, the real battle behind the scenes is not about which car has which skill. It’s about which car will have which voice assistant built right in, if at all. Right now Infiniti has its own voice assistant in-car, the Infiniti Personal Assistant. It will be interesting to see if auto makers will continue to keep their voice assistants in-house or turn to Amazon, Google or Apple to provide the same voice-first experience that they can use whether they are in the car, or in the home.