- At Amazon’s Re:Mars conference in Las Vegas on Wednesday, the company demonstrated a feature that enables its Alexa voice assistant to emulate any voice.
- The feature, which is still in development, can be used to replicate a family member’s voice even after his or her death.
Amazon is working out a way for users to talk to their family members through its Alexa voice assistant even after they die.
Amazon’s . Feather Mars conference again On Wednesday, Rohit Prasad, senior vice president and head scientist for the Alexa team in Las Vegas, explained a feature that allows voice assistants to replicate the voice of a specific person.
In a demonstration video, a child said, “Alexa, can Grandma finish reading The Wizard of Oz to me?”
Alexa confirmed the request with the default, robotic voice, then immediately changed to a softer, more human tone that appears to mimic a child’s family member.
The Alexa team has developed a model that allows its voice assistant to produce high-quality voice with “less than a minute of recorded audio,” Prasad said.
The facility is currently under development, Prasad said. Amazon declined to say when the feature would roll out to the public.
While this feature can be used to replicate any voice, Prasad suggests that it can help remember a deceased family member.
Making artificial intelligence conversational and companion-like has become a major focus, said Prasad, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, when “many of us have lost someone we love.”
“While AI can’t eliminate that pain of loss, it can certainly make memories last,” he said.
Amazon wants to make conversations with Alexa in general more natural, and has rolled out a slew of features that will enable its voice assistant to replicate more human-like dialogue, and even ask a user question,
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