Alexa costs too much? Amazon launches an audit around the assistant
The Wall Street Journal reports that voice assistant Alexa is among Amazon's business units targeted by a series of cost cuts.
The latest financial results from major Big Tech companies, such as Google and Amazon, illustrate the headwinds the sector has been facing for many weeks. Inflation, the rise in key rates by central banks, in particular the Fed, the sharp rise in energy costs, in particular in Europe… everything seems to contribute to a sharp drop in consumer spending at a time of year that is strategic for ecommerce.
As a result, all large companies are cutting back on their expenses. Meta announced more than 11,000 layoffs, on the heels of 3,500 job cuts at Twitter – while others like Apple and Amazon announced a pause in recruitment. Amazon in particular would review several of its business units, just to be able to cut costs and better face this end-of-year period which promises to be difficult.
Alexa would generate 8217;high operational losses
However, according to the Wall Street Journal, Amazon is even considering savings around the Alexa assistant – one of the most widely used in the world. According to documents consulted by the daily, the entire unit would be burdened by operational losses exceeding 5 billion dollars in certain years.
One of the questions Amazon is asking is whether Focus on adding new features to Alexais, or is not, the right strategy to better monetize the assistant. However, Amazon pointed out to The Verge, in the source of this article, that Alexa remains an important unit for the future of the firm:
If we only consider last year, interactions between our customers and Alexa increased by 30%. We are just as optimistic as yesterday on the future of Alexa and the assistant remains an important business and a part of Amazon” investments, explains a spokesperson for the firm quoted by The Verge.
Despite difficult results and predictions for the following quarters, Amazon is also increasing its investments in other areas. As shown, for example, by the acquisition of iRobot ($1.7 billion) or One Medical for an amount of $3.9 billion. Still, the firm acknowledges in its response to The Verge blog that Amazon “takes into account the macro-economic context and seeks opportunities to optimize costs”.
< p>We can note in passing that Amazon is not the only one to ask questions about its assistant. Google, for example, is also said to be optimizing its spending, reallocating funds that normally go to Google Assistant to boost hardware units, in other words anything related to device development. like Pixel smartphones, as reported by XDA.
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