Amazon did not share a timeline for the new Alexa. However, the company noted that the new voice assistant technology will soon be available for US customers.
Retail giant, Amazon, previewed a future version of Alexa that will be powered by generative AI. The company announced at its fall hardware event in its company headquarters in Arlington, Virginia. Amazon is the latest company to jump on the generative AI frenzy since OpenAI launched ChatGPT about a year ago.
According to Amazon, its voice assistant technology is evolving and will soon be powered by a proprietary large language model (LLM). The company noted that the LLM will be “optimized for voice interactions, and the things we know our customers love”. This will include real-time information updates, efficient smart home control, and improving home entertainment.
The new generative AI model will be able to express itself using a variety of tones to show affirmation, excitement, laughter and surprise. It will also be able to adjust to suit the person’s natural pauses and hesitation.
Generative AI Improves Alexa Capabilities
Dave Limp, the SVP of devices and services at Amazon, noted that the generative AI model will enable more conversational experiences. “It’ll give Alexa a bigger – and more opinionated – personality. Again, the new Alexa will be able to respond to multiple requests simultaneously,” said he.
Interestingly, Amazon did not share a timeline for the new Alexa. However, the company noted that the new voice assistant technology will soon be available for US customers.
Sharing its reason for the phased rollout, Limp said:
“When you connect an LLM to the real world, you want to minimize hallucinations – and while we think we have the right systems in place … there is no substitute for putting it out in the real world.”
Consequently, customers who want to be notified when the preview is available can do so through their Echo devices.
Amazon Unveils New Products
Apart from the new generative AI model, Amazon also introduced several new products at its Fall event. Notable among them are the Echo Shoe 8, a smart home hub and video device, Echo Hub, a new smart home control panel for managing connected home devices, and Echo Pop Kids, a new smart speaker for children.
The company also introduced several new Fire Tablets and Fire TV devices that will use generative AI to improve its search functionality.
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