Sony is bringing Amazon Alexa support to its soundbars and wireless headphones, enabling users to request music or ask questions with their voice.
The Japanese technology giant revealed that an upcoming firmware update on its premium HT-ZF9 soundbar will allow it to play ball with other Alexa-enabled devices so you can adjust the volume or play a specific artist by making a verbal request to Alexa.
Additionally, Sony revealed that an update coming in the next few months will allow users to pair their soundbar with Amazon’s Echo smart speakers in the home so they can listen to their music in multiple rooms throughout the house.
As part of Amazon’s grand plan to put Alexa everywhere, the ecommerce titan earlier this year introduced the mobile accessory kit in an effort to get manufacturers to bring Alexa to more devices, including wearables and headphones. A number of headphones on the market already support Alexa, while a few months back ECS became the first company to announce Alexa-enabled headphones with built-in Wi-Fi, meaning users could interact with Alexa without having to first connect to any other device, such as a smartphone.
Sony is now throwing its hat into the ring with an update to a range of its own wireless headphones coming this winter, though this integration will still require the headphones to be connected to the Alexa app on a smartphone.
“Adding Alexa support to our critically acclaimed wireless headphones means we can enhance the experience of consumers by letting them use voice to control the music they listen to,” said Richard Palk, head of video and sound product for Sony Europe. “Likewise, with soundbar in a home environment, we will offer an additional way to interact with your favourite home entertainment products.”
Sony already offered integrations with its audio products and Google Assistant, while Sony’s Android-powered TVs already played nice with Alexa via Amazon’s Echo devices. Adding Alexa support to soundbars and headphones is a logical step for one of the major players in the audio technology sphere.