Amazon’s Alexa on course to lose £8bn this year

NewsVoice

Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant division is expected to lose up to £8.4 billion this year, according to a report from Business Insider.

As the US tech giant goes through its biggest jobs cull in its history, Alexa is rumoured to be losing gravitas at company HQ.

Alexa has been around for 10 years, despite never managing to create a substantial revenue stream.

The unit that houses Alexa is part of the “Worldwide Digital” group which includes Amazon Prime video, and Business Insider says that division lost $3 billion in just the first quarter of 2022, with “the vast majority” of the losses blamed on Alexa.

The Business Insider report cited “a dozen current and former employees on the company’s hardware team,” who described “a division in crisis.”


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One employee admitted that nearly every plan to monetise Alexa has failed.

Another claimed it was “a colossal failure of imagination,” and “a wasted opportunity.”

The mass layoffs have come as the result of years of trying to turn around the division’s fortunes after Alexa was given a huge runway at the start of the project.

Amazon hosted an all-hands meeting in 2019 in order to solve the monetisation problem. By 2020, Bezos had reportedly started to lose interest in the project after efforts became fruitless.

Bezos’ replacement, Andy Jassy, is also internally recognised apparently isn’t as interested in protecting Alexa’s future.

One internal document described the business model by saying, “We want to make money when people use our devices, not when they buy our devices.”

NewsVoice

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