Amazon Alexa Could Soon Mimic Voices of Dead Relatives


Technology has come a long way over the last handful of years, making it even easier to use devices for daily needs. Amazon is the most recent company to come up with an innovative new way to use their Alexa products.

At its annual re:Mars conference, Amazon’s Senior Vice President and Head Scientist for Alexa, Rohit Prasad, announced the new features and upgrades coming to the company’s smart assistant. One of the most notable new elements is the ability to synthesize short audio clips into longer speech.

At the event that was held in Las Vegas, the scenario Amazon presented was using the voice of a deceased loved one (in this case, a grandmother) to read a bedtime story to a grandson using Alexa. Prasad noted that using the new technology developed, the company can accomplish some pretty impressive audio output with limited amounts of audio.

“This required inventions where we had to learn to produce a high-quality voice with less than a minute of recording versus hours of recording in the studio. The way we made it happen is by framing the problem as a voice conversion task and not a speech generation path. We are unquestionably living in the golden era of AI, where our dreams and science fictions are becoming a reality,” Prasad said.

As this is a very sweet idea for some people to memorialize their loved ones, at the same time, it’s also kind of creepy. AI technology has advanced in both the audio and visual spaces that almost anyone can create their own AI content with the help of a few websites.

For the time being, details regarding the new features are limited. There is also no timeline or further specifics given at the moment.


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