X-CUBE-VS4A is the first software package to bring Alexa Voice Service (AVS) to our microcontrollers (MCU). Today, we associate voice services from Amazon, Apple, or Google with smart speakers and if these devices are new and successful, they often look similar. They adopt a cylindrical shape, they are tethered to a wall socket and can get so hot that they can possibly scar certain wood surfaces. This design homogeneity often stems from the use of a beefy application processor that connects to cloud services and processes information, but limits what engineers can actually create. X-CUBE-VS4A is thus a significant breakthrough because it brings AVS to more portable applications to open designers to a whole new type of smart devices.
ST continues to partner with Amazon in more ways than one (see our STM32 products in its different stores), and the focus on Alexa Voice Service brings out a new aspect of our collaboration. Thanks to Amazon’s SDK (Software Development Kit), engineers can take advantage of Amazon’s APIs to bring voice control to their device and benefit from a lot of the same infrastructure that makes Amazon Echo speakers unique. Whether it is to control home appliances, check weather forecasts, or get the answer to a burning question at three in the morning by just using voice commands instead of turning on a phone, AVS offers a rich experience that sets the benchmark for the rest of the industry. Thanks to X-CUBE-VS4A, it’s going to be a lot easier to bring AVS to small devices because using a power-hungry application processor is no longer necessary.