Development of the Amazon Alexa skill "Blinkist"
If you haven't heard of Blinkist, here's a brief summary. Blinkist takes the most important statements of a non-fiction book and turns them into 15-minute audio tracks and texts in audiobook quality. These audio titles are divided into several parts (so-called "blinks") and are read by professional speakers.
We took over the realisation of the Alexa Skills for the young company from Berlin, which is currently available in Germany, the USA and the UK.
There are two ways to use the skill - either in the free version or with a premium subscription.
In the free version, you have access to the so-called "Daily Blink" every day, which you can listen to in its entirety.
As a premium user, the following functions are available to you:
With the help of the recommendations, the skill suggests various titles to you. If you don't like these suggestions, you can limit the recommendations according to a variety of categories, such as psychology, career & success or science.
With the search function, you can - as the name suggests - search directly for titles. The skill understands both the book title and the name of the author.
The titles that you have found or that have been suggested to you can either be listened to immediately or saved in your own library for later.
With this skill, we have also integrated so-called In-skill purchasing (ISP). This means that you can subscribe to Blinkist Premium directly in the skill and therefore use all premium functions such as the search or recommendations of the skill. Of course, you can also test this for 7 days for free.
A big challenge was the synchronicity between the individual systems. If users already have a Blinkist subscription, the Skill must be able to recognise this. The user should not be asked to pay again via the Alexa Skill. Playing and continuing the user's content must also work synchronously via the skill as well as via other systems.
Even without a Blinkist account, you will get the "Daily Blink" everyday. You can also purchase a subscription directly via the skill and unlock the entire library.
You can also simply try out the skill - just activate it in the Alexa Skill Store and get started.