Amazon Echo devices can now be used to make calls between Skype users for the first time, as Amazon and Microsoft’s increased collaboration continues to bear fruit.
Alexa-enabled devices can be linked up to a Skype account, meaning anyone can say, “Alexa, call Jeff on Skype” using their voice, bypassing the need to open up the Skype app on a desktop or mobile.
Amazon is rolling out the feature to customers in the UK, US, India, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada first. The Echo Show, Amazon’s screen-based smart assistant, as well as the Echo Spot and Show Mode on Fire tablets also come with video calling support to carry out face-to-face conversations.
It is the latest initiative between the two companies, after an Alexa app was added to the Microsoft Store for Windows 10 earlier this month, allowing Amazon’s digital voice assistant to do many of the same tasks as it would on an Echo smart speaker, answering anything from questions about the weather, to turning on a smart light.
To activate Skype on an Alexa-powered device, users need to go to Menu, followed by Settings, then Communication, to add their Skype account details. This can be done within the Alexa app or on Amazon’s website.
Microsoft is also giving away 200 free minutes for the first two months when you link Skype with Alexa.