Alexa knows a few good tricks, but until now you've had to enable each skill (Amazon's word for Alexa's apps) individually. That's just changed, as your Echo will now learn each skill as soon as it's live in the catalogue.
Last year Amazon rolled out an update that let you enable a skill by just telling Alexa to do so, but now you don't even need to do that, as Cnet has discovered. Instead, just tell Alexa to order you an Uber without enabling anything or touching the app.
Read this: The best Amazon Echo skills
Once you've used a new skill it'll stay enabled on your account, but there are a few bugs in the machine right now. When we asked Alexa to start a game of Jeopardy! (not enabled as a skill on our Echo) she did so, but when we asked her to launch The Tonight Show app, she said the skill needed to be enabled in the app. We expect Amazon will continue to iron this out.
Overall it's a small change, but one that reduces more friction from the experience. It's also a feature Google Home already had, with many of its apps ready to go from the moment you plug the device in.
Like with Google Home, you can still browse the range of skills in the Alexa app to find out what they do and whether they're worth a go, and chances are you'll still be doing that a lot. Still, like its recent Bluetooth update, the latest move is another way Amazon is making the Echo feel that little bit smarter.
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