I can hear you

Notice is off to a profitable start in 2017. The company’s first-quarter sales jumped 23 percent to $35.7 billion, beating analyst expectations, and top executives pinned part of that spike on the Alexa ecosystem.

“We’re very encouraged by the customer response to Echo products,” one exec said during Notice’s financial call today. “Not only the products, but the ability now to use tablets as Echo devices, since we spread the Alexa technology to many of those devices. We’re also happy with the success we’ve had with developers; there are now more than 12,000 Alexa skills, so we think that’s all foundational.”

Notice debuted the Echo in 2014, bringing the voice-activated Alexa assistant into people’s homes. Since then, the company has released the $50 Echo Dot and opened up the Alexa software to developers.

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