Sears to sell Alexa-enabled appliances on Amazon; stock jumps 8%

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GE and Whirlpool have already integrated similar support across their respective products, and now "the full line of Kenmore smart appliances" - air conditioners, refrigerators, and more - can be controlled with a new Alexa skill, Kenmore Smart. The Kenmore Smart air conditioner are available up to a capacity of 18,000 BTU.

With this deal, Sears is looking to expand its reach and grow the Kenmore name brand.

Slumping US retailer Sears announced an agreement Thursday to sell appliances from its Kenmore line on Amazon, a move that is expected to stiffen competition for other brick-and-mortar stores.

The Kenmore Smart air conditioners with Alexa range in price from $379.99 to $739.99. As well as Alexa integration, there's also a Kenmore Smart app for smartphones which can be used remotely to adjust temperature, set schedules, and control fan speed.

However, in a statement, Charlie Kindel, director of the Alexa Smart Home at Amazon, indicated Alexa-enabled Kenmore washing machines could be next.

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This deal with Amazon will allow customers to shop and purchase appliances from the comfort of their owns homes. And by 1995, 25% of the major appliances sold in the USA were Kenmore.

Sears' stock pared some of the early gains but was still up 14 percent, on track for its best day in about four months.

This isn't the first time that Kenmore appliances have been available on Amazon, period: Third-party sellers offer gray market parts, accessories, and even some appliances on the site's marketplace.

It is perhaps ambitious to suggest Kenmore may once again reach this lofty height, but, in a release, chief executive Edward Lampert said, "We continuously look for opportunities to enhance the reach of our iconic brands to more customers and create additional value from our assets".

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