Biggest free Alexa update in years is coming to YOUR Echo soon

Amazon has just announced a major new update that’s coming to every Alexa-powered device that it sells. This free upgrade will even be compatible with the first-generation Amazon Echo smart speaker revealed back in 2015.

The Seattle-based online retailer announced that its clever AI is about to get much, much smarter, thanks to its implementation of a custom-designed large language model. The result of this progress? Every device powered by Alexa will be able to have a fully-fledged conversation with you – just like a human being.

Yes, that’s right. Amazon wants to try and make Alexa as conversationally adept as possible with its new Let’s Chat feature that it’ll be bringing to any Amazon Echo, Echo Show, or Fire TV gadgets already in your home.

All you have to do is say “Let’s Chat” then for example say “I’m cooking a BBQ tonight, what sides shall I make?” and Alexa responds with some ideas, then say, “and what’s the weather going to like tonight?” and you’ll find out. You can even add, “tell my friends to come over a 6pm to enjoy the food” and Alexa will write a message for you.

That’s not all. Amazon hopes that Alexa will become so advanced in the coming years that the assistant no longer sounds quite so, ahem, robotic (no offence, if you’re reading this, Alexa….) 

The Amazon engineers hope Alexa will be upgraded to express more emotion and respond as fast as a human.

Amazon says the upgraded Alexa is based on a new large language model (LLM) that’s been custom-built and specifically optimized for voice interactions which means you will soon be getting real-time information, efficient smart home control, and maximizing your home entertainment. It hopes that speaking to Alexa will feel more natural and conversational than ever before, and Alexa’s ability to reason, infer customer intent, and understand complex requests will remarkably improve.

And the best thing is it will be coming to every single Amazon Alexa device – even if you have one of the first-generation Echo devices. Amazon is promising that this conversion technology will get better and better over time. It’s launching as a test in the US first but more places including the UK will see it soon.

That’s not the only new thing Amazon announced. A new Echo Show 8 is on the way and the new third-generation model arrives with a sleek curvaceous new design, improved speakers, and a clever software tweak that changes its behaviour on-screen depending on where you are stood in the room when using the Echo Show 8.

If you rely on an Echo Show to listen to music, podcasts or audiobooks – this new Echo Show 8 could be a worthwhile upgrade. Amazon has added support for Spatial Audio, which is included as part of Amazon Music and Apple Music subscriptions. Spotify has yet to add support for the standard, which maps out the instruments in three-dimensional space.


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