Published: Sat, March 10, 2018
Sci-tech | By Brandy Patterson

Alexa's 'really creepy' laugh fixed by Amazon

Alexa's 'really creepy' laugh fixed by Amazon

The company has confirmed the fix has already been rolled out to devices.

Alexa is the digital assistant that makes the Amazon Echo line tick, but recently, it has also been terrifying some owners of the smart speakers.

The random laugh is different from the "tee-hee" laugh Alexa gives when asked if it can laugh. Amazon says Alexa will only respond to a follow-up commands if she's "confident" that it is a legitimate request and not just background noise. This is supposed to make Alexa less likely to mistake what a person has just said.

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The ecommerce giant's virtual assistant has been heard laughing in a creepy, maniacal way without being prompted - and it became a trending moment on Twitter Wednesday. Alexa competes in the digital assistant market with offerings from tech titans including Apple, Google, and Microsoft. You can enable Follow-Up Mode on your device by opening the Alexa app and navigating to the Settings menu.

Amazon is planning to resolve this by disabling that phrase and replacing it with "Alexa, can you laugh?"

"We are also changing Alexa's response from simply laughter to "Sure, I can laugh" followed by laughter". Unfortunately, Amazon's explanation does not provide an insight into the reasoning behind Alexa's laughter in a quiet room.

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However, looking at Amazon's plans, it is unclear if the solution will indeed put an end to the cases of Alexa randomly laughing.

The short laugh that users recorded and posted on Twitter sounds slightly sarcastic, as if the person laughing were trying to convey that they didn't really find whatever they'd just heard amusing.

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