Amazon: Alexa is becoming leaner and more emotional

Alexa should be able to run on weaker devices in the future. In the United States, Amazon is also testing an Alexa voice that conveys emotions.

Amazon’s voice assistant Alexa can run on even weaker devices in the future. Manufacturers can also install the Alexa Voice Service on devices that have 1 MB of RAM and a Cortex-M chip. Previously, the Alexa installation was only possible with 100 MB of RAM and a stronger Cortex-A chip.

In the future, the Alexa devices will only have to be able to recognize the wake-up command (“Alexa!”), All other operations will be carried out in the Amazon cloud. Manufacturers could thus save 50 percent of the manufacturing costs for their Alexa products, Amazon manager Dirk Didascalou told

His vision: When more and more devices support Alexa, the voice assistant is ubiquitous almost unnoticed. “This enables what we call ‘environmental intelligence’ and ‘environmental computing space,'” said Didascalou. “You just speak to your environment and the environment reacts to you.”

In the United States, Amazon is currently testing a feature that makes Alexa emotional: Alexa should respond to certain requests either joyfully or disappointed. As an example, Amazon gives questions about sports results: If Alexa has to deliver the bad news about the defeat of the favorite team, the voice should sound kinked.

The two emotions – excited and disappointed – are available in three intensity levels. Early user feedback showed that satisfaction with the assistant increases through the emotional voice, Amazon wrote in a blog entry. You can also listen to audio samples there. The emotional Alexa pronunciation has not yet been announced for the German Alexa voice.