Alexa moonlighting on Android phones is nothing new, but Amazon’s virtual assistant does seem to prefer to take up residence inside budget phones, rather than the more desirable flagships.
That has all changed thanks to Sony, which has just released a version of it’s lovely but expensive Xperia 1 that eschews Google Assistant in favour of Amazon’s Alexa. That means you can get Alexa’s advice on things, as well as use your phone to control various smart home bits and pieces with the power of your voice.
Related: Best Android phone
On top of this, the phone comes with a bunch of Amazon apps pre-installed, including Amazon Shopping, Amazon Music, Audible and Amazon Alexa. It’s not clear if this is on top of the extra software Sony already bundles with the Xperia 1 – if it is, this is going to be one software-heavy handset.
At the time of writing, it seems to be exclusively available on the US Amazon store, with no parallel listing on the UK shop. We’ve asked Amazon if it plans to stock it on this side of the Atlantic, and will update this when we hear back.
In any case, it’s available on Amazon.com for $950, or around £787. Engadget reports that it’s available for $850 (~£704) until August 26, but there’s no sign of that price at the time of writing. Well, there is one on the listing’s only review: a one-star number with the heading “Really you gonna try to sell me that crap for $850”.
Related: Best smartphone
That’s a bit harsh, as anyone who has read our Xperia 1 review will know. “The Sony Xperia 1 doesn’t play by the rules set out by the Samsung Galaxy S10, Huawei P30 Pro and iPhone XS,” wrote Max at the time. “By doing things differently, it focuses on a different audience and – ultimately – (mostly) impresses.”
Perhaps adding Alexa to the mix is just another way of doing things differently.
Would you like Alexa built in to more flagship phones? Let us know what you think on Twitter: @TrustedReviews.