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Lowe's smart Iris devices can now be controlled through voice commands with Amazon Alexa devices. Credit: Lowe's
Lowe’s smart Iris devices can now be controlled through voice commands with Amazon Alexa devices. Credit: Lowe’s

Lowe’s is the latest company to take advantage of Alexa, the digital brain that powers Amazon Echo.

The home improvement giant earlier this week began rolling out voice-integrated skills for Iris, its smart home system. The new skills allow users to control Iris devices throughout the house with the sound of their voice. That means users can now say things like, “Alexa, set the temperature to 72 degrees,” or “Alexa, turn on the ceiling fan.”

Lowe’s makes a host of smart products under its Iris division, and not all of them are Alexa-integrated yet. For now it’s mostly thermostats, fans and light switches.

Lowe’s is working to add voice integration for more of its smart home products. The company also plans to add custom settings. Lowe’s representatives gave an example of a movie night scene in the living room where the lights dim, the temperature drops, and the popcorn machine cranks up, all through a single voice command.

Lowe’s also announced it is selling Iris products on Amazon for the first time.

Last year Amazon opened up Alexa to developers, and Amazon said tens of thousands of them are now working on skills and projects for Alexa. As of now, Alexa has more than 2,000 skills. Developers who want to add to Alexa’s abilities can write code that works with Alexa in the cloud, letting the smart assistant do the heavy lifting of understanding and deciphering spoken commands.

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