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Fine Tuning An Amazon Echo

amazon echo

Chris took us back in IFA History:

In August of 1930 Albert Einstein was the keynote speaker at the opening of the 7th “Big German Radio Exhibition”, today known as IFA. The show was held at the Berlin fairgrounds which were now centered around the newly erected “Berlin Radio Tower” or “Funkturm”, the German name of this national landmark which is still one of the main attractions of Berlin, like the Eiffel Tower in Paris after which the “Funkturm” had been modeled. At the show, TV receivers with the mechanical Nipkow disc where shown, but the company Loewe demonstrated the first television set with a Braun tube.

Jeff in Bainbridge, Georgia asked:

“I bought the Amazon Echo. When I first got it, you could play music and if you ask it, it would tell you the name of the song, the artist and the album. Now it doesn’t give you the album and I was wondering if there’s a way to get that information again.”

 

Unfortunately, Amazon doesn’t seem to offer any settings as to how much detail Alexa gives you.

This is just speculation, but the change may have come because Alexa has had a little bit of an issue with albums. If you tell it to play Album Name by Some Artist, assuming the album is in your Amazon Music library it will play the album, however, if there is a song of the same name by the same artist, it will play the individual song instead of playing the full album.

Amazon may be trying to get its users to forget about albums for now while they find a new way for you to ask Echo for every song in an album that doesn’t get you just one song.

It is a shame though, because if there was no song with the same name as the full album, Echo would play the album as expected.

Echo has been struggling with some issues like funny spellings

Understandably, Echo has been struggling with some issues like funny spellings (think, play deadmou5, no one is saying “play deadmou the number 5,” or songs with symbols on their names), and with ambiguous natural speech. They opted to err on the side of the song, probably thinking that people would be more likely to understand that they accidentally asked for a song when they wanted an album. People would probably be more confused if Echo just started playing what would sound to them like a random song by the same artist, when it interpreted the song requested to be an album name instead.

Unfortunately, you may need to wait for another update to see if the album name reappears, but it seems that for now there’s no way to explicitly ask to be given the full information.

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Written by Dave Graveline

Dave Graveline

Dave Graveline is the founder, Host & Executive Producer of "Into Tomorrow" in addition to being President of the Advanced Media Network".

Dave is also a trusted and familiar voice on many national commercials & narrations in addition to being an authority in consumer tech since 1994. He is also a former Police Officer and an FBI Certified Instructor.

Dave thrives on audience participation!

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