Web development

How Unleashed Technologies is integrating voice technology into its offerings

The Columbia web design and dev firm is adding another way to distribute content.

Unleashed Technologies is tapping into Amazon Alexa's flash briefing skills. (Photo by Flickr user Guillermo Fernandes, used under a Creative Commons license)

Columbia-based Unleashed Technologies specializes in building websites. Now the 10-year-old company has a new feature that gives voice to website content that its team is building.
Unleashed Technologies recently rolled out a new integration that allows clients to make their news available on Amazon’s Alexa.
The integration feeds web content from Drupal or WordPress to a Flash Briefing for Alexa. The company figures it’s a good place to start.
“The Alexa platform enables many types of custom skills, including Flash Briefing feeds,” Unleashed Technologies Lead Web Developer Colin O’Dell said via email. “These are the easier to create than fully-interactive skills and don’t require any additional management overhead once deployed; this makes them a great first step into the world of IoT.”
One organization that Unleashed Technologies has worked with so far is the Association of the United States Army. The nonprofit association looks to keep people connected to Army news.
“Flash Briefing skills, like the one we created for AUSA, help people stay informed on topics they care about – they simply ask Alexa for their personalized news and it’s read to them as they go about their daily routines,” O’Dell said.
AUSA CTO Harry Rothmann was already using voice technology at home, and also has multiple generations using it in his family. He said the integration offered a new way to reach members.
“I’m a believer in voice technology as a way to communicate with potential constituents,” as well as members, Rothmann said. The news content from AUSA’s website is read through the Flash Briefing. In the future, he sees potential for expanded uses.
“I don’t think this technology is going anywhere,” he said. “I think it’s only going to grow.”


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