The company is now making the largest cuts in its history to the teams working on that technology.
The teams at Amazon that have been working on the Alexa voice assistant are being hit by the largest job cuts the company has ever seen.
The concept of Alexa was first created by Jeff Bezos more than a decade ago on a whiteboard.
In Bezos’ vision of the voice assistant, it would provide the user with help in completing a full spectrum of different tasks ranging from reading a bedtime story to a child to controlling other gadgets or making it easier to shop online.
That said, the vision of placing this platform into the lives of millions of people has been missing its mark. As the tech world turns its attention toward AI as the next hyped technology, Amazon, Google, Apple, and Microsoft, among others, have been watching their investments into these smart gadgets fall short of where they were expected to be.
As a result, Amazon’s effort to grow the device exceptionally fast has taken a new direction in which it is far more focused on using the technology to help the company to make money.
“If you have anything you can do that you might be able to directly monetize, you should do it,” was the most recent direction Amazon leaders have been recommending, according to one Alexa team employee cited by Ars Technica.
The new Amazon CEO has been pushing massive layoffs, particularly in the voice assistant team.
Andy Jassy, the new company CEO has directed the company in a way that has led to substantial layoffs within the company, starting late last year, and most particularly in the Alexa team. This began as the company’s execs placed the product’s direct monetization benefits under the microscope.
These layoffs have come at a time in which the company has been making other cuts as well. Some project that the company will end up slashing a total of 18,000 jobs by the time it’s done its effort to protect its profits throughout the potential global tech downturn. As voice assistants have yet to live up to the hype around them, they have become a target for cutbacks at a time of belt tightening.