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Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Alexa Improves her Reading Style.

I had previously experimented with Alexa voice ability to reasonably read arbitrary English text, for possible business applications. The result was rocky.    Now she has come out with a means to better pronounce text,  emphasizing and de-emphasizing syllables reasonably well.  Much better than before, but still with an occasional blip. In some uncommon contextual cases. The whole result is a better style and voice for 'newsreading'.  Also useful to just have another voice that sounds less 'smart home' and more business.  More professional.  Can an assistant talk to you in your CEO's voice?  Not yet.  You can test it yourself, examples below (apparently for now in US only, in English) :

Alexa’s news-reading voice just got a lot more professional
Alexa now knows which words to emphasize in a sentence   By Jon Porter in theVerge

Starting today in the US, Alexa will now read out the news in a much more natural, human-like way by selectively emphasizing certain words in a sentence in the same way a real newscaster would. The new voice, which Amazon first announced last November, can be heard when you ask Alexa for your daily news briefing using the query, “Alexa, what’s the latest?”  ... " 

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