Amazon’s Alexa can now help you diagnose COVID-19, but in the US | HT Tech

Amazon’s Alexa can now help you diagnose COVID-19, but in the US

It’s using information from US health authorities. There is no news yet if Amazon plans to start anything like this for India

By: HT CORRESPONDENT
| Updated on: Mar 27 2020, 20:50 IST
FILE - In this Aug. 16, 2018, file photo a child holds his Amazon Echo Dot in Kennesaw, Ga. Amazon met with skepticism from some privacy advocates and members of Congress last year when it introduced its first kid-oriented voice assistant , along with brightly colored models of its Echo Dot speaker designed for children. (AP Photo/Mike Stewart, File)
FILE - In this Aug. 16, 2018, file photo a child holds his Amazon Echo Dot in Kennesaw, Ga. Amazon met with skepticism from some privacy advocates and members of Congress last year when it introduced its first kid-oriented voice assistant , along with brightly colored models of its Echo Dot speaker designed for children. (AP Photo/Mike Stewart, File) (AP)

Amazon Alexa users in the US can now use the voice assistant to help diagnose cases of coronavirus infection, the first steps at least. Queries such as - "Alexa, what do I do if I think I have coronavirus?" will prompt the voice assistant to ask about your symptoms, travel history and possible exposure situations to the virus.

Depending on your responses, Alexa will offer advice based on information from the official Centres for Disease Control and Prevention information.

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This functionality is a step ahead of what Alexa was previously offering, which was simple facts. Amazon's announcement comes after Apple announcing something similar for Siri.

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Besides offering advice on symptoms, Alexa can now also be asked to sing a song for 20 seconds so as you know when you stop washing your hands. According to reports, Alexa's sub-par singing voice means that people won't be using it much, but it can be used for kids. This feature is available in Australia, India, Brazil, France, Canada, UK and the US.

Google has also added a similar feature to its voice assistant.

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First Published Date: 27 Mar, 20:50 IST
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