You'll soon hear 8 new voices in Amazon Alexa skills

Smart Speaker Summer Sale 2018

The smart assistant is compatible with Android and iOS and works with up to six users with personalized settings

The online retail giant said Wednesday that developers can now apply to test the voices, which were built to sound like U.S. English speakers.

That's thanks to the Amazon Polly text-to-speech service, which Amazon is officially opening up to developers as part of a free preview.

An Alexa app, pre-installed on the computer will let the users call up the assistant and see any information like weather forecasts, music albums and more on display.

Adding new voices into a skill can make it more interesting for customers to use, according to an Amazon blog post. This new capability can help you enrich your skill's experience, making it more engaging for customers. "It's as easy as that".

Way back in January 2017 at CES 2017 BMW and Nissan announced that the companies would be bringing Microsoft's Cortana to your vehicle as part of its Connected auto vision.

It should be noted that developers can already add multiple voices to their skills, but it's a more complex process that involves recording a voice as an audio file. You can even use an Amazon Polly voice for every utterance in your skill if you like.

While the speech engine today supports a couple dozen languages, only the U.S. English voices are being offered to Alexa developers at this time. With Alexa of course already in more than 20% of U.S. households it seems likely automakers will see this as a bigger selling point than the rarely used Cortana service.

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