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Amazon Alexa Gets New Voice Options, Including Celebrities

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Amazon Alexa device on countertop in home
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Amazon is now offering a masculine-sounding voice option to its virtual assistant, Alexa, which has now started rolling out to users. The company is also introducing a new wake word, Ziggy, to trigger the assistant. You can hear the new assistant’s voice here.

Alongside this new assistant voice addition are two other notable voice options—Shaquille O’Neal and Melissa McCarthy. These two join the likes of other iconic celebrity voices on the Alexa platform, like Samuel L. Jackson.

“That’s right folks, get ready for the vocal stylings of this nasal midwestern gal!” said Melissa McCarthy. “I am so excited to join the Alexa family. It’s been such a fun experience working on this project. I hope you all enjoy all my dad jokes! Fun fact—if you hear a slide whistle, it’s my personal one that I brought with me to the recording studio!”

Shaq said, “It’s on! Shaq is in the house to make your speakers bounce. Boomshakalaka! I’m so excited to be part of the Alexa experience.” Both celebs bring their fun personalities to Alexa, and you can say “Hey Melissa” or “Hey Shaq” to access all of the standard features Alexa has to offer. You can also say “Alexa, introduce me to Melissa” (or Shaq) to get started, or jump right in with commands like “Hey Shaq, rap for me” if you want to be impressed.

Between Shaq, Melissa, and the other new voice option, you’ll have plenty of fun choices to try out with your Alexa devices. Alexa makes it easy to change your preferred voice and wake words, so you can get things set up just how you like. The options are rolling out now, and the celebrity personalities are available to purchase for $4.99 a pop.

via The Verge

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