In an effort to have more world citizens to talking to what appears to be an empty room, today, Amazon announced that Alexa and Echo will be available, by invitation, in Japan. Since the hardware is only as good as its Skills Kit, developers will also gain access to Alexa Skills with support for the voice assistant for Japanese customers. Alexa voice search remains in the works but is expected to available for the Japanese market soon.
“Tens of millions of customers already love Alexa and we’re thrilled to introduce her to our customers in Japan today, with an all-new experience designed from the ground up for Japanese customers, including a new Japanese voice, local knowledge, and over 250 skills from Japanese developers,” said Tom Taylor, Senior Vice President, Amazon Alexa. “We’re also excited to expand the Alexa Skills Kit and the Alexa Voice Service, so developers and hardware makers around the world can create Alexa experiences for our Japanese customers.”
Although a dominant force in the United States, Amazon continues to move its agenda to be more competitive globally, gain greater market share, and push further into Asia with this initiative.
Alexa and Echo devices are scheduled to begin shipping next week.
Living abroad or an international geek? Let us know in the comments if you pick up a new virtual assistant.