Amazon stops paying bonuses to Alexa developers

Amazon has cut paid perks for Alexa developers. With a bigger focus on generative AI, the voice assistant’s third-party apps (skills) aren’t a priority. An Amazon spokesperson told Engadget that the “older programs have simply run their course, so we decided to sunset them.”

Launched in 2017, when Alexa was all the rage, the program paid developers bonuses for skills that resonated with users. It was part of Amazon’s quest to turn Alexa Skills into a booming app store. (Did that happen?)

At the company’s fall 2023 devices event, Amazon previewed its next-gen version of Alexa, with ChatGPT-like generative AI abilities. With AI powers, Alexa appeared versatile enough to address all sorts of queries and requests without creating apps and skills manually. Alexa isn’t going anywhere; Amazon is just making it think for itself.

— Mat Smith

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