A related question I had was, is there a file size limit on the mp3 file that can be played? I get a response size exceeded 1 MB error when I try to play an mp3 file bigger than a meg. This is quite limiting for me.
You can check the doc to be certain. But I'm pretty sure you are right, it's about 1 meg. But I've never seen anyone hit that, since you are also limited to 90 seconds. Just out of curiosity, what are you playing that is less than 90 seconds but more than 1 meg?!?
That's true. My books are broken down by chapters and each chapter is a few MBs in size. I could take a chapter mp3 and break it into less than 1 MB segments but I don't know of a way to provide Alexa with a list of mp3s and have it play them back to back, so the user doesn't see pauses in between. Does that make sense, can you suggest any other ideas?
You really need to read the SSML section and understand the limits of what Alexa lets you do. You cannot play a sound file larger than 1MB. You cannot play a sound file longer than 90 seconds. You can only play up to five clips per response. So, basically, you cannot create the skill you have designed. If you already have an audio book, why don't you just upload it to Audible and let people play it via the normal features in the Echo? If all you are doing is trying to sell an audio book for people to listen to on the Echo, that's your best bet. But there are some additional limitations to this approach. (I looked it in the context of releasing fictional tie-in stories for StarLanes.) * You have to sell it. Audible will not let you choose the price. You have to let Amazon choose the price. And they won't choose $0. * If this is related to a skill, you can't tie it in. I.e. you can't launch it from your skill. Nor can you entitle a skill user to a copy of it. * You have to go with Audible. You can't use Podiobooks, for example. (Where I've published before.) Amazon have not tied The Echo into any other service. These were deal-breakers for me. But your use case may be different.
Thanks for your response! So am trying to build an Alexa audio book skill for the thousands of free audio books available on
https://librivox.org/. Since I have access to their database (which is all public btw), I can expose their audio books through Alexa and provide yet another means for people to enjoy those free audio books (in addition to the librivox website and their Android app) I can build interesting search features like searching by genre, playing a random book (and eventually even a recommendation system based on what people have played in the past). I don't see any association for this skill with
Audible.com because as I understand audible needs a subscription and does not have a way for people to upload free audio books to serve them out via
audible.com. The Echo has native support for audible, so it's technically possible for Alexa to play larger mp3 files, but I'd guess this capability isn't exposed for developers yet.