HTC U11 adds Alexa with hands-free voice commands and squeeze launch

While Google Assistant is loaded into almost every Android smartphone, Amazon’s Alexa platform is arguably just as good, if not better in some areas. That’s a big reason why a couple of Android OEMs have decided to partner with Amazon to bring Alexa to their smartphones, and today, HTC’s U11 is picking up Alexa.

Alexa on smartphones may seem a bit pointless to some, but on the HTC U11 things are certainly taken up a notch. Rather than accessing Alexa through a simple app (which you can do), the U11 supports Alexa as a native assistant on the phone, just like Google Assistant.

You can set up Alexa to open through a squeeze on the phone, just like you can with Assistant. The bigger deal here, though, is that Alexa on the U11 actually supports hands-free commands, a first for an Android smartphone with Alexa. This is one of the things that felt like it was missing on Huawei’s Mate 9 and its Alexa integration, so U11 owners should undoubtedly get more use out of the service.

Alexa on the HTC U11 is pretty much the full experience you’d find on an Amazon Echo, with support for various skills for home control, alarms, and the like. Unfortunately, the experience doesn’t support the visual options that the Echo Show does, nor does it support reminders as Droid-Life points out.

HTC’s Alexa app is available to download now on Google Play for HTC U11 owners.

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