Amazon’s Alexa app has two new features for your car


James Martin/CNET

The Alexa app is getting two new features for your car: Auto Mode and a Start My Commute routine. The new features will be rolling out in the coming weeks for Android and iPhone users, Amazon said in a blog post Thursday. 

Auto Mode consists of four screens — a home screen, navigation, communicate and play — and aims to have Alexa act as your in-vehicle assistant. The home screen will add shortcuts to play and pause music or news, navigate and make calls. The navigate screen will give you quick access to your favorite locations stored in the Alexa app. The communicate screen lets you easily place a call and drop in on your Alexa devices, while the play screen shows your most current media played using your Alexa devices.

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“Auto Mode was designed to help you stay focused on the road with easy to read visuals, large touch targets and intuitive features and shortcuts for the most common actions used in the vehicle like navigating to saved locations, placing calls to contacts and Alexa devices and playing recent media,” Amazon said in its blog post. 

The Start My Commute routine will tell you the weather, your traffic update and provide your choice of entertainment. All you have to do is say, “Alexa, start my commute” to an Alexa-enabled device or vehicle to kick off the routine. 

Last week at its devices event, Amazon released several other huge updates to its Alexa voice assistant and added several new products to its Echo devices lineup.

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