Amazon's new feature could help people anxious about their smart speaker collecting too much information. But Amazon is also introducing new and simpler ways to delete your voice recordings on all Alexa-enabled devices as well.
"Since we launched the first Echo Show device, customers have told us they love asking Alexa to show them things, whether it's a recipe for banana bread, their shopping list, or music lyrics", Amazon senior vice president Tom Taylor says.
By default, Amazon permanently holds onto recordings captured by Alexa, while giving consumers an option to delete these recordings through its website. Echo Show 5 will start shipping in the US, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Japan, Canada, New Zealand and Australia next month, and to India in July.
Just like its bigger variant the Echo Show 5 can take both audio and visual cues, to complete tasks with Amazon's own AI assistant, Alexa. As with existing Echo Show devices, a button electrically disconnects the microphone and camera.
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As of now, Amazon sells three smart devices with an integrated display: Echo Show priced at Rs 22,999, Echo Spot at Rs 12,999 and Echo Show 5 at Rs 8,999. The company said it will soon let users delete their last request by saying, "Alexa, delete what I just said".
Now playing: Watch this: You deleted your Alexa voice recordings, but the text.
The fact that Amazon stores a history of all your "Alexa" voice commands (and sometimes has human reviewers listening to them) recently became a point of controversy after stories in Bloomberg and The Washington Post called attention to some of the less-private aspects of using Alexa.
The change to make deleting recordings easier comes as criticism of Amazon and other smart speaker manufacturers has escalated in recent months as consumers purchase more of the devices and integrate them into their homes.
In addition to those voice-based privacy controls, a new Alexa Privacy Hub gives users a central place on the web to manage settings and privacy, including the ability to erase all voice recordings and commands for specific time periods or all of a user's history.