Smart Hub Version 2 brings new features and enhancements

Young lady with Alexa smart speaker

What is the myNCBI Smart Hub?

The myNCBI Smart Hub is a voice assistant AI-based skill that’s available on Alexa-enabled devices. Launched in May 2022, it allows service users and their families access to the latest information about sight loss, audiobooks, podcasts, newspapers, magazines, and much more through simple voice commands on a user’s smart speaker.

Smart Hub Version 2

Building on the success of the release of the myNCBI Smart Hub last year, we are excited to bring you news of new features and improvements available right now in Smart Hub Version 2. From choosing talking newspapers by title to listening to voice recordings of your favourite NCBI articles, there is much to explore!

“With the myNCBI Smart Hub Version 2, NCBI will once again push the boundaries to demonstrate that technology is the biggest enabler for people who are blind or vision impaired. The Smart Hub has quickly become a staple in the lives of many of our service users and with Version 2, we are hopeful that more people will learn what is possible with this technology.” Kyran O’Mahony, NCBI Chief Technology Officer and CEO of IA Labs

New and improved features to version 2:

Fundraising: A new voice command, “Tell me about fundraising”, gives information about NCBI’s Eye Can lottery, legacy donations, community events, corporate partnerships, and volunteering events and opportunities.

Video Series: In addition to the existing media on myNCBI Smart Hub is two video productions, the Vision Series, and the Adult Services Assessment Procedure. Saying “play a video series” offers users a choice between the two.

Contact NCBI: Version 1 allowed users to ask for a call back from NCBI staff. The version 2 update also offers NCBI’s direct phone number, as well as the option to be sent a text message or email with the phone number in it.

Visit the NCBI website: Similarly to the contact number, users can hear the URL for NCBI’s website or ask to be sent a text message or email.

NCBI article recordings: Audio recordings of the NCBI InSight Magazine, NCBI Labs Technology Newsletter, and NCBI blog posts are now available in version 2.

Choose a Talking Newspaper by title: Up until now, NCBI Library users had to choose a genre, then listen to articles from different newspapers and magazines in that genre. Version 2 allows users to choose a specific newspaper or magasine they would like to hear from.