Amazon in discussions with Australian publishers for Echo content deals

Lindsay Bennett
By Lindsay Bennett | 23 August 2017

Amazon is in discussions with several Australian publishers as it plans to launch Echo in the market.

AdNews understands News Corp, Fairfax, the ABC and Mamamia are among a group of publishers exploring content deals with Amazon.

Echo has not officially launched in Australia yet, however it's arrival is expected before Christmas.

Rival Google Home, which launched in June this year, has already secured deals with Fox Sports, ABC News, The Australian, Huffington Post, TechCrunch and Sky News are all on board with Google Home's news services.

Amazon released its voice-controlled wireless speaker device Amazon Echo in 2014 in the US. Since then users have been able to access a number of services, such as news updates, sports reports and weather reports, all within the personal-assistant-like app, Alexa.

As Alexa’s skills have grown, so too have the number of publishers that are featured within the app.

News outlets including CNN, The Washington Post and The Economist offer users daily news briefings through Alexa.

Like Facebook and Google, Amazon does not pay publishers to host their content on Echo and media companies will likely have to implement new processes to be compatable with the platform.

But how will it master Aussie slang?

Amazon has also been advertising a job vacancy at its Boston office for an Australian English linguist, showing the ad tech giant is looking to localise its home device for the market.

The company is currently on the hunt for more than 230 members of staff across the business as a whole. As well as Echo, Amazon is looking to launch its streaming platform Amazon Music in Australia.

Amazon has been approached for comment.

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