Published on January 10, 2024, 6:41 am
With the dominant theme of artificial intelligence (AI) at this year’s CES, Amazon has introduced three new Alexa skills that heavily incorporate AI. These skills are now accessible to all Echo and Alexa users and can be freely obtained through the Alexa app or the Alexa Skills website.
The first skill on the list is Character.AI, developed by the creators of the Character.AI website. This skill enables users to chat with various chatbots, including historical figures such as Socrates or Albert Einstein, engaging in conversations about philosophy or physics. Additionally, users can utilize Character.AI to interact with trip planners, dating coaches, fitness coaches, and other helpers for assistance and advice. For entertainment purposes, one can explore AI-driven alternate timelines or aid an AI in escaping a challenging situation. To access this skill, simply say “Alexa, open Character.AI,” and choose which type of conversation you’d like to have.
Next on the list is Splash, a skill that utilizes AI to generate songs based on user descriptions. Users can instruct Alexa to create any type of song or specify their preferred genre of music. After playing a short excerpt, Alexa asks if any modifications need to be made, such as adding lyrics. If satisfied with the tune created, users can command Alexa to send it to their phone for playback. To use this skill for song creation without specifying a genre, say “Alexa, create a song with Splash Music.” Alternatively, if a genre is desired, say “Alexa, open Splash Music” and provide your preferred style.
Finally, there is Volley Games: an AI-powered twist on the classic 20 questions game. In this skill, a friendly AI host challenges players to guess an object by asking ‘yes’ or ‘no’ questions. Players receive the category of the mystery item and proceed by asking relevant questions until they hopefully reach the correct answer. Along the way, hints can be requested whenever needed. To experience this skill, say “Alexa, open Volley Games.” The AI host discloses the category and then prompts players to ask their first question.
These three new skills have been developed by utilizing tools introduced by Amazon in September. These tools aim to simplify the integration of generative AI into Alexa skills, enabling users to engage in conversational interactions and access real-time data. During the announcement of these tools, Amazon also highlighted other capabilities such as booking restaurant reservations and receiving summaries of trending news stories.
As AI continues to evolve and become more advanced, these new Alexa skills provide users with additional entertainment options, personalized song creation experiences, and interactive gaming experiences. Whether you’re engaging in philosophical conversations with historical figures or challenging an AI host to guess objects, these skills demonstrate the potential of generative AI in enhancing our daily lives through voice assistants like Alexa.