Amazon will stop paying bonuses to Alexa developers

Amazon has decided to cut paid bonuses for Alexa developers. The company confirmed to Engadget on Wednesday that it will end its Alexa Developer Rewards Program at the end of June. A second program that rewards developers for using Amazon Web Services as support for Alexa apps will end at the same time.

With the emergence of generative AIadvanced voice assistant third-party applications (“skills”) no longer appears to be the central focus for the company. The news was first informed by Bloomberg and endorsed by Engadget with the company.

Amazon described the move as phasing out an old project that had run its course. “These are legacy programs launched in 2017 to help new developers interested in building skills accelerate their progress,” an Amazon spokesperson wrote to Engadget. “Today, customers have more than 160,000 skills, a well-established Alexa developer community, and new LLM-enabled tools to help developers create new experiences for Alexa. “These old programs just ran their course, so we decided to sunset them.”

The company told me that the app was launched when developers were still learning how to create voice apps, and that it was designed to help them get started. Amazon told Engadget that less than one percent of developers use the software. Alexa said developers will still get paid for in-app purchases from Alexa skills, adding that as developers become more proficient, the cost to make them has gone down.

The Alexa Developer Awards Program was created to reward developers who create high-quality skills for the assistant. Launched in 2017 Alexa was all the rage, the program paid bonuses to developers for skills reaching engagement thresholds in specific categories. This was part of Amazon’s quest Turn Alexa Skills into a thriving app store for the first devices of the next generation of sound, a vision that was never fully realized.

Now, the renewed interest in AI assistants is about generative AI that can handle the same tasks as Alexa’s skills (and in some cases better). At its fall 2023 device event, Amazon previewed the next generation A version of Alexa with generative AI capabilities like ChatGPT. The company has also gradually integrated next-generation technology into its system vendor tools and product pages.

Bloomberg reports that third-party apps aren’t making Amazon much money (not surprising given today’s news). The company cut funding available for Alexa developer payments in 2020. Amazon too laid off several hundred workers in the Alexa section late last year. Meanwhile, Google threw in the towel a long time ago: in 2022, it completely canceled third-party voice applications for Google Assistant.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *