Alexa Blueprints is a set of templates that lets users create custom skills and capabilities for the Alexa virtual AI assistant without the need for coding or technical expertise. Alexa Blueprints, which Amazon introduced in April 2018, gives the average device owner or citizen developer free online templates for programing Alexa skills, including personalized quizzes, jokes, or helpful information for houseguests and babysitters.
Although Alexa users already had access to thousands of skills, from ordering pizza to requesting a ride, Alexa Blueprints comes with pre-filled content suggestions that can be customized simply. One example is the “Custom Q&A” template, which lets users set a specific answer to a question. Currently, Amazon Alexa Voice Services (AVS) offers more than 20 Blueprints with more expected to be released.
According to Amazon, these personalized capabilities can be created in minutes. Once a template is selected, the user responds to the prompts by filling in the blanks. After the desired content has been input, the user’s personalized skill will be available for use on all Alexa-enabled devices associated with the account and will not be made available to the public. Users may enable, disable, or edit the skill at any time. Additionally, there is no limit to the number of skills users can create.
Categories and Examples of Alexa Blueprints
The Alexa Blueprints templates are split into four categories:
- Fun & Games: This category is the largest and offers custom trivia games, jokes, inspirational quotes or compliments on command.
- At Home: This category is best suited for storing household information and can be used to leave directions for houseguests, pet sitters or babysitters.
- Storyteller: This category allows users to write adventure, fable, science fiction or fairytale stories for Alexa to read aloud.
- Learning & Knowledge: This category provides learning tools such as having Alexa quiz users on flashcards.