As you may remember, as first reported by Elias over at AFTVNews back in July of this year, Amazon announced an expansion of the Alexa Skill API which gives skill developers and device manufacturers more natural ways to control media devices like TVs, remotes, A/V receivers, and IR hubs.
We have just learned that this technology has made its way into the PlayStation Vue app on Amazon Alexa enabled devices including Fire TV streaming devices, sticks and the Amazon Fire Edition TVs.
The enhanced functionality enables Vue subscribers to control the app with voice control. For example, users can say “Alexa, go to ESPN on PlayStation Vue”.
Vue subscribers can also control playback while watching content in the PlayStation Vue app. For example, you can say “play” or “pause” to start or stop playback. You can also move forward and backward in seconds and minute increments as desired. For example, “jump forward 30 seconds” to advance past commercials.
So, in real world use, how convenient is this new functionality? There is currently nothing like a “Skip to content” to assist with skimming past commercials in DVR recordings. You will have to arbitrarily guess at the timing. Still, the ability to immediately tune to a channel without having to cycle through menus may appeal to some.
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This functionality could not come at a better time for Vue. We are expecting an upcoming price increase on the service. Will these additions help keep Vue subscribers from jumping to more affordable providers? We shall see.
What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments below: