E-commerce giant Amazon is making its virtual assistant, Alexa more personal than ever. The company is developing a system to make Alexa mimic any sound after hearing less than a minute of audio.
According to the company’s Senior Vice President, Rohit Prasad, the company said that the goal behind this upcoming feature is to make memories last after “so many of us having lost someone we love during the pandemic.” Amazon did not say when this feature will be rolled out. The company said that it aims to achieve “generisable intelligence” with Alexa, or the ability to adapt to user environments and learn new concepts with little external input.
Amazon shared its vision for companionship with Alexa during a conference that the company held in Las Vegas on Wednesday. With the upcoming feature, users will be able to give Alexa any voice they want. Be it of their favourite characters or celebrities, or someone in their family, like a later grandmother. The company showed a demo video during the conference, where Alexa was asked, “Alexa, can grandma finish reading me the Wizard of Oz?,” to which the virtual assistant responded in a sound like the individual’s grandmother.
This comes soon after Amazon announced its first fully-autonomous robot named Proteus. Amazon claims Proteus can operate on its own, without any manual assistance, which means the robot is not confined to specific areas of its warehouse and it can automatically do its task with the employees around the same space.