Last Updated: September 21, 2023, 14:42 IST
Seattle, Washington State, USA
Alexa, what is the weather like? That’s generally been the way to operate Amazon’s voice assistant over the years but the company now has put its trust in generative AI to help polish Alexa and make it more human-like than ever before.
Amazon hosted its annual devices event on Wednesday, and as expected, the company had a lot of AI stuff to share that will be powering the new-look Alexa. Amazon confirmed that the conversational Alexa will be rolling out to all the Echo devices launched in 2014. Generative AI is the hot keyword in the industry and OpenAI has shown its capability with ChatGPT which now powers Microsoft’s Bing and Edge browser.
Google is another pioneer in the AI category with products like Bard and Gemini close to being the real deal. Amazon isn’t building anything new, instead, it will use Alexa to communicate with consumers, something the company feels its rivals are not doing yet.
So what is Amazon doing now to make big changes in Alexa? The company shared details about its latest large language model (LLM) to improve Alexa conversations and make them personal, and close to speech accents that humans have. Amazon explained that it trains Alexa for different accents that help improve its speech patterns. This version of Alexa won’t need a wake word (finally) to give you responses.
In fact, during the Alexa demo at the event, Amazon showed us its improvements where you can break a sentence and start a new one without any interruption in the way Alexa responds. What you could say is what generative AI is bringing to Alexa and this version will be coming out in 2024, the company announced. Will this be enough to compete with Google Assistant and ChatGPT in the months to come?
It is still premature to make those claims but the potential is there and Amazon will be hoping that the popularity of its Echo and Fire TV devices will ensure that Alexa trains and improves with every conversation people have with the AI-powered voice assistant. The company will be offering this version of Alexa for all the Echo products which makes sense and would definitely please consumers.