Today saw the introduction of a brand new feature for Alexa by Amazon called 'Show and Tell'. Amazon Echo Show devices with this feature will be able to scan and recognize inanimate objects such as everyday household items and kitchen ingredients. Amazon created Show and Tell in order to aid the blind and visually impaired who struggle with the basic function of sight on a daily basis.
The brand new Alexa feature is currently rolling out to first- and second-generation Echo Show devices in the U.S. Once updated, Echo Show owners can simply hold out any object in front of the smart screen's camera and prompt the voice assistant to scan the object simply by asking “Alexa, what am I holding” out loud.
Sarah Caplener, head of Amazon’s Alexa for Everyone team, explained the inspiration behind the feature and described Amazon's journey and creation process which led to the formation of Show and Tell:
"The whole idea for Show and Tell came about from feedback from blind and low vision customers. We heard that product identification can be a challenge and something customers wanted Alexa’s help with. Whether a customer is sorting through a bag of groceries, or trying to determine what item was left out on the counter, we want to make those moments simpler by helping identify these items and giving customers the information they need in that moment."
Although Amazon has not disclosed plans to release Show and Tell in other countries as of yet, it could be possible that the company decides to release it in other regions in the future. For now, Echo Show owners located outside of the U.S. will simply have to wait for further updates on the situation.