Amazon adds iCloud Calendar compatibility to Alexa ecosystem

Posted:
in iCloud
Amazon has announced that its voice recognition Alexa family of devices can now read from and save changes and additions to Apple's iCloud Calendar.




To integrate the Calendar with Alexa, iCloud Calendar customers can simply link their account in the settings tab in the Alexa app. Once linked, conversations with Alexa can give responses based on the data, and add appointments that will propagate to Apple's Calendar application on iOS devices.

The feature is live for users in Germany, the U.K., and the U.S.

Initial AppleInsider testing of the feature addition shows little if any difference in time between using Alexa to add a Calendar event, and using Siri. Changes made through Alexa on an Amazon Echo were available effectively instantly on the Calendar app installed on both an iPhone SE and iPhone 7 Plus.

The integration may be a further sign that the battle around streaming video hardware and apps between Amazon and Apple may be ending. Besides just Calendar addition to Alexa which would likely not have been possible without Apple's help, reports suggest that Amazon and Apple have made a deal allowing for Amazon Video to be played on an Apple TV app, with the announcement possibly coming as soon as WWDC.

The Alexa technology debuted in November 2014 with the Amazon Echo. Activated by a user-assignable key word, which is set to "Alexa" by default, Echo can fetch information from the Web, play music, set alarms and conduct basic PDA functions like updating a to-do list.

Apple is rumored to be developing a Siri stand-alone speaker. Reports about the as-yet-unreleased device claim that the device will likely offer physical controls with some kind of dedicated touch panel, similar to that of the Amazon Echo Show.

Amazon's Alexa has recently arrived on the iPhone, in the e-retailer's official app.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 15
    AI_liasAI_lias Posts: 224member
    FYI, you'll have to turn on two-factor authentication for iCloud, in order to get an app-specific password for the Alexa app.
    edited May 2017 Soliben20
  • Reply 2 of 15
    SoliSoli Posts: 7,678member
    AI_lias said:
    FYI, you'll have to turn on two-factor authentication for iCloud, in order to get an app-specific password for the Alexa app.
    Which everyone should have enabled by this point considering how much data your iCloud account stores with an web-accessible portal.
  • Reply 3 of 15
    SoliSoli Posts: 7,678member
    1) This is great, but it does feel like an "Oh shit" moment from Amazon since so many of their Echo users are surely Apple customers.

    2) OT: It's great to come back home after, say, a jog while still listening to a podcast on your iPhone headphones and say "Alexa connect" to switch audio over to your home's speaker system while you get a drink a water, change clothes, shower, or just collapse onto the floor while the dog disgustingly licks the salty sweat off your face.
  • Reply 4 of 15
    AI_liasAI_lias Posts: 224member
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    FYI, you'll have to turn on two-factor authentication for iCloud, in order to get an app-specific password for the Alexa app.
    Which everyone should have enabled by this point considering how much data your iCloud account stores with an web-accessible portal.
    One question: if you enable two-factor authentication does it mean you cannot get on iCloud unless you have your phone? That would be a major inconvenience, in cases where you lose you phone (or worse), and want to get onto a computer to use "Find my phone" feature, or access your contacts, etc.
    edited May 2017
  • Reply 5 of 15
    SoliSoli Posts: 7,678member
    AI_lias said:
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    FYI, you'll have to turn on two-factor authentication for iCloud, in order to get an app-specific password for the Alexa app.
    Which everyone should have enabled by this point considering how much data your iCloud account stores with an web-accessible portal.
    One question: if you enable two-factor authentication does it mean you cannot get on iCloud unless you have your phone? That would be a major inconvenience, in cases where you lose you phone (or worse), and want to get onto a computer to use "Find my phone" feature, or access your contacts, etc.
    2FA doesn't require an iPhone at all.

    "With two-factor authentication, your account can only be accessed on devices you trust, like your iPhone, iPad, or Mac."
  • Reply 6 of 15
    AI_liasAI_lias Posts: 224member
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    FYI, you'll have to turn on two-factor authentication for iCloud, in order to get an app-specific password for the Alexa app.
    Which everyone should have enabled by this point considering how much data your iCloud account stores with an web-accessible portal.
    One question: if you enable two-factor authentication does it mean you cannot get on iCloud unless you have your phone? That would be a major inconvenience, in cases where you lose you phone (or worse), and want to get onto a computer to use "Find my phone" feature, or access your contacts, etc.
    2FA doesn't require an iPhone at all.

    "With two-factor authentication, your account can only be accessed on devices you trust, like your iPhone, iPad, or Mac."
    Really! What is that one-time code that's being sent to my phone each time I log into the iCloud on a web browser? How can you say that 2FA doesn't require an iPhone at all? Maybe another iDevice, but it requires that you have something else besides the usual password, otherwise it would not be something you know+something you have.
  • Reply 7 of 15
    SoliSoli Posts: 7,678member
    AI_lias said:
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    FYI, you'll have to turn on two-factor authentication for iCloud, in order to get an app-specific password for the Alexa app.
    Which everyone should have enabled by this point considering how much data your iCloud account stores with an web-accessible portal.
    One question: if you enable two-factor authentication does it mean you cannot get on iCloud unless you have your phone? That would be a major inconvenience, in cases where you lose you phone (or worse), and want to get onto a computer to use "Find my phone" feature, or access your contacts, etc.
    2FA doesn't require an iPhone at all.

    "With two-factor authentication, your account can only be accessed on devices you trust, like your iPhone, iPad, or Mac."
    Really! What is that one-time code that's being sent to my phone each time I log into the iCloud on a web browser? How can you say that 2FA doesn't require an iPhone at all? Maybe another iDevice, but it requires that you have something else besides the usual password, otherwise it would not be something you know+something you have.
    As the link I supplied clearly states, you can have and iPhone, an iPad, or a Mac (possibly even an iPod touch if the OS is current enough), but you don't specifically need an iPhone.
  • Reply 8 of 15
    AI_liasAI_lias Posts: 224member
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    FYI, you'll have to turn on two-factor authentication for iCloud, in order to get an app-specific password for the Alexa app.
    Which everyone should have enabled by this point considering how much data your iCloud account stores with an web-accessible portal.
    One question: if you enable two-factor authentication does it mean you cannot get on iCloud unless you have your phone? That would be a major inconvenience, in cases where you lose you phone (or worse), and want to get onto a computer to use "Find my phone" feature, or access your contacts, etc.
    2FA doesn't require an iPhone at all.

    "With two-factor authentication, your account can only be accessed on devices you trust, like your iPhone, iPad, or Mac."
    Really! What is that one-time code that's being sent to my phone each time I log into the iCloud on a web browser? How can you say that 2FA doesn't require an iPhone at all? Maybe another iDevice, but it requires that you have something else besides the usual password, otherwise it would not be something you know+something you have.
    As the link I supplied clearly states, you can have and iPhone, an iPad, or a Mac (possibly even an iPod touch if the OS is current enough), but you don't specifically need an iPhone.
    I was only trying to say that if you lose your iPhone, or it gets stolen, you cannot just run to the nearest web browser, log into iCloud and track your lost or stolen phone any longer, or access your iCloud data. 
    edited May 2017 ben20
  • Reply 9 of 15
    ben20ben20 Posts: 119member
    Yeah, I see that as a problem, too. If I need to replace a phone while traveling without any other Apple device, what do I do?
  • Reply 10 of 15
    SoliSoli Posts: 7,678member
    AI_lias said:
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    Soli said:
    AI_lias said:
    FYI, you'll have to turn on two-factor authentication for iCloud, in order to get an app-specific password for the Alexa app.
    Which everyone should have enabled by this point considering how much data your iCloud account stores with an web-accessible portal.
    One question: if you enable two-factor authentication does it mean you cannot get on iCloud unless you have your phone? That would be a major inconvenience, in cases where you lose you phone (or worse), and want to get onto a computer to use "Find my phone" feature, or access your contacts, etc.
    2FA doesn't require an iPhone at all.

    "With two-factor authentication, your account can only be accessed on devices you trust, like your iPhone, iPad, or Mac."
    Really! What is that one-time code that's being sent to my phone each time I log into the iCloud on a web browser? How can you say that 2FA doesn't require an iPhone at all? Maybe another iDevice, but it requires that you have something else besides the usual password, otherwise it would not be something you know+something you have.
    As the link I supplied clearly states, you can have and iPhone, an iPad, or a Mac (possibly even an iPod touch if the OS is current enough), but you don't specifically need an iPhone.
    I was only trying to say that if you lose your iPhone, or it gets stolen, you cannot just run to the nearest web browser, log into iCloud and track your lost or stolen phone any longer, or access your iCloud data. 
    If you don't require a second factor for authentication then it obviously defeats the point of requiring it. You can add other people's devices as trusted. For example, if your gf/wife/mother has one of the aforementioned Apple devices can you use them with 2FA.
  • Reply 11 of 15
    k2kwk2kw Posts: 1,278member
    Amazon has announced that its voice recognition Alexa family of devices can now read from and save changes and additions to Apple's iCloud Calendar.




    To integrate the Calendar with Alexa, iCloud Calendar customers can simply link their account in the settings tab in the Alexa app. Once linked, conversations with Alexa can give responses based on the data, and add appointments that will propagate to Apple's Calendar application on iOS devices.

    The feature is live for users in Germany, the U.K., and the U.S.

    Initial AppleInsider testing of the feature addition shows little if any difference in time between using Alexa to add a Calendar event, and using Siri. Changes made through Alexa on an Amazon Echo were available effectively instantly on the Calendar app installed on both an iPhone SE and iPhone 7 Plus.

    The integration may be a further sign that the battle around streaming video hardware and apps between Amazon and Apple may be ending. Besides just Calendar addition to Alexa which would likely not have been possible without Apple's help, reports suggest that Amazon and Apple have made a deal allowing for Amazon Video to be played on an Apple TV app, with the announcement possibly coming as soon as WWDC.

    The Alexa technology debuted in November 2014 with the Amazon Echo. Activated by a user-assignable key word, which is set to "Alexa" by default, Echo can fetch information from the Web, play music, set alarms and conduct basic PDA functions like updating a to-do list.

    Apple is rumored to be developing a Siri stand-alone speaker. Reports about the as-yet-unreleased device claim that the device will likely offer physical controls with some kind of dedicated touch panel, similar to that of the Amazon Echo Show.

    Amazon's Alexa has recently arrived on the iPhone, in the e-retailer's official app.
    This makes me wonder if Siri will be using AWS for the voice processing soon.  When Apple releases their speaker.
  • Reply 12 of 15
    SoliSoli Posts: 7,678member
    k2kw said:
    [Pointlessly copied article removed]
    This makes me wonder if Siri will be using AWS for the voice processing soon.  When Apple releases their speaker.
    Hopefully most of the processing will be localized with the new chip we've been reading about.
  • Reply 13 of 15
    thisisasjthisisasj Posts: 62member
    The Find My iPhone service through iCloud.com does not require an Apple device. If it did, that would defeat the purpose of the find service when you only have one Apple device. Two-factor authentication does require at least one Apple device. You can set it up with a friend's Apple device information if you like. You just have to authenticate the device, whether you own it or not.
    llama
  • Reply 14 of 15
    bruckheimerbruckheimer Posts: 115member
    Apple will probably change that eventually if that's the case, because that is too easy. What they need to do is if you loose your device and you can't do the Two-factor authentication on iCloud.com, you can simple answer some security questions to get in and track your device, which only you would know. Just a thought!
  • Reply 15 of 15
    That might be true for older iPhone's, but not with newer iPhones. Friend of mind lost his iPhone 6s and when he went to log into iCloud.com to track it it poped right up for 2 step verification to be able to log in, now if you have another device like a iPad this is great because you can use the iPad for the verification, but if you only own a iPhone only, only way is to do account recovery and take off 2 step to locate your phone and hoping your battery doesn't die by then.
Sign In or Register to comment.