Huawei Mate9 is now an Alexa-ready phone

Alexa arrives via an OTA update

Remember that back at CES 2017, Huawei announced the Mate9 will be the first phone in the world to have the Amazon Alexa voice assistant onboard. The company also said it will send out a software update that will bestow Alexa capabilities on the phablet in February 2017.

Well as it turns out Huawei had some trouble keeping its promise. It’s late March and the Chinese company is only now starting to roll out the Alexa-filled update which arrives over-the-air.

However, you won’t be able to access Alexa from just anywhere on the phone. Intriguingly enough, Amazon and Huawei have built an app paradoxically called Huawei Alexa which brings the virtual assistant forth. Users will need to do is open the app and tap on the large blue button in the middle, which means Alexa is not “always” listening.

This announcement comes in the wake of another report which claims AT&T might be looking to take Huawei under its wing and help the Chinese company sells its phones through its network in the US.

Despite being the world’s third largest smartphone manufacturer, Huawei has been struggling in the US. So putting Alexa on its phones represents another effort to differentiate its devices from the myriad of Androids already present on the US market.

Currently the Mate9 is available for purchase in the country via Amazon and Best Buy, but Huawei needs more exposure to attract customers towards its products. Hopefully a partnership with the Echo-maker will be a step in the right direction.

In an era where virtual assistants are everywhere, Huawei is also rumored to be working on its own AI-driven phone companion. However, the plan is for Huawei to put its own solution on phones meant for the Chinese market, while the international ones will get Alexa and maybe even the Google Assistant.

Does the idea of having Alexa on your phone sound good to you?

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