Amazon is gearing to bring its voice-based virtual assistant Alexa to your living room with a new lineup of televisions and Dish's new Hopper DVR. Amazon has teamed up with Seiki, Westinghouse Electronics, and Element Electronics to launch a range of 4K Ultra HD Smart TVs featuring the Fire TV experience and support for Alexa as a voice remote. In addition, Dish Network in collaboration with Amazon has announced to deliver Alexa voice control on its Hopper DVR.
The all-new Amazon Fire TV Edition TVs will be available in 43, 50, 55, and 65-inch screen sizes and will sport a screen resolution of 3840x2160 pixels. The Seiki, Westinghouse and Element 4K Ultra HD Smart Fire TV Editions will be available later this year on Amazon.com and at authorized retailers. The company has announced that the suggested retail price for the models will be announced closer to retail availability.
The company says that the new Fire TV Edition TVs will offer a broad selection of streaming and over-the-air content including access to over 7,000 channels, apps, and Alexa skills and live TV broadcasts when used with a separate HD antenna.
The new TVs will feature an on-screen programming guide to make finding what to watch easy, and with the included voice remote with Alexa, customers can launch any app with their voice or search content, play music, and control smart home devices including Belkin WeMo, Philips Hue, Wink, Samsung SmartThings, and Nest among others.
On the launch of Amazon Fire TV Edition TVs, Marc Whitten, Vice President, Amazon Fire TV said, "Teaming up with brands including Seiki, Westinghouse, and Element on a new range of smart TVs allows Amazon to deliver an experience that's familiar and easy to use. Fire TV Edition offers access to a great selection of streaming and over-the-air TV and movies, Alexa for easy voice search and content control, and the many other features and experiences customers have come to expect from the best-selling line of Amazon Fire TV products."
The Amazon Fire TV Edition will feature 3GB of memory and 16GB of inbuilt storage, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Ethernet connectivity. It will come with one-year limited warranty.
In the meanwhile, with Amazon's partnership, Dish users will be able to navigate, search and play TV content on a broadband-connected Hopper DVR through Alexa with just spoken commands. Dish claims to be the first "TV provider to announce direct compatibility with Amazon Alexa."
Dish customers can watch voice-controlled TV by pairing the Hopper DVR with the Amazon Echo or Echo Dot, both Alexa devices.
Announcing the news, Rob Pulciani, Director, Amazon Alexa said, "Amazon is excited to be working with Dish to develop an Alexa skill that offers a hands-free television experience, expanding the ways that our customers can use Alexa devices like Amazon Echo to make their lives easier. You no longer have to set down your popcorn to change the channel, or spend time searching for what channel the game is on - just ask Alexa to do it for you." Dish promises that Alexa integration will be available on Hopper DVR starting in the first half of this year.