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Why Alexa May Have Played Matchmaker In Potential Amazon-DISH Network Marriage

Why Alexa May Have Played Matchmaker In Potential Amazon-DISH Network Marriage
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If, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) and DISH Network Corp (NASDAQ: DISH) pull off a merger, it will consummate a courtship that has been developing for years.

In 2015, DISH began using Amazon Home Services to sell in-home installations for large TVs, home audio systems and wireless networking. The announcement might have surprised investors who were unaware that DISH, a satellite TV provider with nearly 14 million subscribers, offered this secondary service.

"Our approach right now is really to wow them with the service we provide," Erik Carlson, executive vice president of operations at DISH, told Benzinga at the time.

See Also: Exclusive: DISH Network And Amazon Could Expand Partnership, Explore Possible Merger

Alexa Plays Matchmaker

Fast forward to last month, when DISH and Amazon said they were developing technology to allow Amazon's breakout personal digital assistant, Alexa, to channel surf and program merely by voice command.

The voice-controlled application allows DISH’s Wally or Hopper receivers to interact with the Alexa-equipped Amazon Echo, Echo Dot or Amazon Tap connected speakers.

It added more details this week, and DISH began marketing a harmonious convergence called Video Skill API, the software that allows Alexa to play, pause, adjust the volume, search for titles by genre or actors or conceivably any category.

The new software gives Alexa a vocabulary tha will let her play or pause media, adjust the volume, or search for specific titles, actors or genres. Outside developers can use the software to give Alexa more abilities to manage DISH service purely by voice command.

Send In The Drones

Another step in the tightening bond between the two companies came this week, when a source told Benzinga that Amazon intends to support its delivery drones with DISH's 5G spectrum. Additionally, Benzinga has learned the companies are exploring integrating Amazon Prime Video for DISH-facilitated streaming.

Now, in what could be the final act of an evolving relationship, the two companies could become one.

Image: Guillermo Fernandes, Flickr

Posted-In: Alexa Amazon EchoEducation Rumors M&A Tech Media General Best of Benzinga


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