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Amazon's updates to the Echo's 'Drop In' and 'Reminder' features should boost user engagement

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Amazon is evolving its Echo smart speaker lineup into an in-house intercom system by allowing users to set reminders that can be played across all Alexa hardware and enabling Drop In to be used on all Echo devices in the house at once.
where US consumers have smart speakers
Drop In allows Alexa users to send messages to other Alexa-enabled devices, but the feature previously only worked with one device at a time. This means Alexa users can broadcast messages to multiple devices within their houses: For example, a user with a device in the kitchen can communicate with family members that dinner is ready via an Alexa-enabled device in a bedroom, living room, and home office.
Amazon's updates to the Drop In and Reminder features are geared toward boosting user engagement with multiple Alexa-enabled devices placed around the home. More than half (53%) of smart speaker owners reported owning more than one device, up from 48% last year, per an April 2020 survey from NPR and Edison Research — and the percentage of respondents who own more than three devices increased 8 percentage points since last year, from 21% to 29%. Given how many US households have multiple smart speakers, we expect the expanded functionality will heighten the value prop of owning multiple Alexa-enabled devices, driving engagement across more use cases.
Ultimately, Amazon's updates can help the company capitalize on heightened smart speaker engagement amid the pandemic — and drive new habits in the process. Consumers are engaging with their smart speakers with greater frequency due to the coronavirus pandemic: Among US adults who own a smart speaker, 34% said they've used the devices more often than usual in the past month, according to a Morning Consult poll conducted from March 31-April 1, 2020.
This figure increases among younger generations, with 42% of adults aged 18-29 reporting using the devices more often. The rise in smart speaker usage early on in the pandemic suggests this will be a continuing trend into Q2: Business Insider Intelligence expects 53% of US smart speaker owners will be daily users by the end of June 2020, up from 33% at the end of 2019, per NPR and Edison Research.
We're forecasting this jump because local stay-at-home orders, combined with social distancing recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), have incited a shift in US consumers' needs and behaviors — boosting smart speakers' utility for users in the process. Amazon's move to introduce updates that are designed to heighten engagement throughout the home will help the company better position itself as users become more reliant on their devices during this time, which could lead to users developing habits around these features that outlast the pandemic.
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:https://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-doubles-down-ambient-strategy-with-new-alexa-features-2020-6:

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