Even as it expands its hardware lineup with a couple of new, lower-cost options, Amazon continues to build in new abilities to Alexa. That's the voice control system that debuted on the Echo, and has since progressed to the Echo Dot (and maybe even a wearable or two in the near future). Alexa has been upgraded to work with an impressive variety of third-party services over the last year or so, and the latest is Google Calendar.


The new voice functions are pretty predictable: check your scheduled events, or make a new one with standard, no-nonsense commands like (wait for it) "add an event to my calendar." To add Google Calendar capabilities to an Echo, just open the Amazon manager app on a phone or tablet and add the service in the Settings menu. This functionality isn't groundbreaking, but it does show a little grace on Amazon's part - in other, more contentious circles of the electronics world, the company isn't being so friendly to cross-platform users.