Amazon has officially announced that its Amazon Echo devices and Alexa AI voice assistant will both soon be available to customers in France. That means that customers will be able to purchase the company's Echo, Echo Dot, and Echo Spot devices. There are also currently hundreds of Alexa Skills already available for French customers to access. That includes Skills from both local and international brands such as TP-Link, Uber, Philips Hue, Marmiton, franceinfo, Netatmo, Legrand, and La Fourchette. Furthermore, the announcement should mean that users in France will be able to access the associated Android application in the near future as well. As to the official timeframe, Amazon says its devices are already available to order and Alexa will roll out starting the week of June 11.
It goes without saying that the news contained in the announcement doesn't necessarily start and end with the online retailer itself. It should also indicate that third-party hardware OEMs and software developers are free to begin working with the AI In all likeliness, the news frees up various tech companies ranging from smart speaker to TV manufacturers to selling their smart home products in the region. That's not to say that those companies will immediately begin selling products in France. Bearing that in mind, it does pave the way for those sales to happen if and when those companies that prominently feature Alexa decide to do so. Some companies, including Boulanger, Sowee, Harman Kardon, Sonos, Ultimate Ears, Netgem, and Archos, have already been revealed by Amazon to have plans in the region. Beyond the hardware, software developers will be able to create even more Alexa Skills. So it shouldn't take too long for those available features to catch up with other areas where Amazon's Echo lineup was already available.
Of course, voice interactions will be conducted in French – or in any other language the digital assistant currently works with. However, Amazon seems to have gone a bit further than that with this launch. In fact, in addition to language tweaks, the company says it built the experience from the ground up to better cater to France's culture. That should mean a smooth first-time experience for users in the region, regardless of which Alexa-enabled device they choose.