Virtual assistants

Amazon claims it has sold more than 100 million Alexa-enabled devices

Dave Limp giving a presentation on Alexa-enabled devices and services. Photo: Grant Hindsley/AFP/Getty Images

Amazon's senior vice president of devices and services, Dave Limp, told The Verge that more than 100 million Alexa-enabled devices have been sold.

The big picture: That number puts Alexa significantly behind other intelligent assistants like the Google Assistant and Siri, which are pre-installed on cellphones, but Limp said he isn't worried about competitiveness with other products. He said there will be "multiple players in the foreseeable future," and he doesn't think "there's going to be one winner." He also told The Verge he believes in "multiple assistants" and having them "interact in lots of different ways."

Google picks up company behind Q&A app

Signage for the Google Assistant is displayed during CES 2018. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Google has quietly acquired Superpod, a startup that had built a question-and-answer mobile app, Axios has learned. Google paid less than $60 million to “acqui-hire” the founders and purchase some of Superpod's assets, according to a source.

The bigger picture: The search giant hasn’t been shy about its ambitions for Google Assistant, the voice-activated virtual assistant that it debuted in 2016. Superpod, which lets users ask questions and receive answers from experts, could help Google bolster its virtual assistant’s ability to answer users’ questions.