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Google’s Assistant voice is getting some international flair

These new accents are powered by DeepMind AI.

Google’s Assistant voice is getting some international flair
[Photo: Thomas Kolnowski/Unsplash]
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Since last year, Google has been using WaveNet AI technology from its Alphabet sibling DeepMind to make the Google Assistant’s spoken voice sound a little more human and a little less croaky and robotic. Earlier this year, it started adding additional voice options based on this tech.

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And now it’s incorporating British and Australian voice options–both female for now–based on WaveNet’s synthesis. You can choose either of them without switching the Assistant out of its U.S. English setting–which lets it understand you, if that’s the sort of accent you got. Following the Assistant’s convention of naming its voices after colors, the new options are known as British Racing Green and Sydney Harbour Blue.

About the author

Harry McCracken is the technology editor for Fast Company, based in San Francisco. In past lives, he was editor at large for Time magazine, founder and editor of Technologizer, and editor of PC World.

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