Tue. Dec 1st, 2020

Megastar Amitabh Bachchan becomes first Indian celebrity voice on Amazon’s Alexa

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New Delhi, Sep 14 (HS): Amitabh Bachchan’s iconic baritone will soon be heard on Amazon’s digital assistant Alexa as Amazon has inked a deal with the 77-year old Bollywood veteran that will bring his voice to the digital assistant, making him the first Indian celebrity voice on Alexa. Bachchan Alexa will provide jokes, shayari (Urdu poetry), weather, advice, inspirational quotes and much more.

Global Sr. Vice President and Country Head of Amazon India, Amit Agarwal tweeted, “Alexa will have first ever celebrity voice experience in India. Hint: “Rishte mein toh hum tumhare baap lagte hai, naam hai _” Any guesses?”

“Technology has always given me an opportunity to adapt to new forms,” Mr Bachchan said in a mailed statement. The statement further reads: “Be it in movies, TV shows, podcasts and now I am excited to create this voice experience in partnership with Amazon and Alexa. With voice technology, we are building something to engage more effectively with my audience and well-wishers.”

The voice experience will be launched in 2021 and will be a paid service. Amazon, however, says that you can get an idea of what it sounds like by saying “Alexa, say hello to Mr. Amitabh Bachchan” into any Alexa-enabled device.

Alexa is available on Amazon Echo, Fire TV Stick with Alexa TV remote, the free Alexa app and Amazon shopping app on Android smartphones. In addition, several devices like smartphones, bluetooth speakers, headphones, wearables and smart TVs also have in-built Alexa.

According to Puneesh Kumar, Country Leader for Alexa, Amazon India, “Cricket and Bollywood are integral to Alexa’s unique Indian personality. Mr Bachchan’s voice is truly memorable for any Indian who has grown up with Bollywood. This combination delivers a perfect pitch to further delight and simplify the lives of our customers. We are excited to see how customers will respond when they use Alexa and hear his voice.”

The Shehanshah of Bollywood joins the Hollywood actor Samuel L Jackson, who was the first ever celebrity to join Amazon’s Celebrity Voice Programme in December 2019. According to Amazon’s announcement, Bachchan’s Alexa skill will be limited to India and he will speak in Hindi.