Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Help Alexa learn more Indian languages: Amazon India

Reading Time: 2 minutes
alexa in hindi
Alexa in Hindi turns 1, now available on smartphones in India.

As Alexa in Hindi celebrates its first anniversary in India, the company is hopeful that her knowledge graph will improve and it will talk to millons of people in several regional languages in the near future.

Today, users from India make hundreds of thousands of requests in a day in Hindi and Hinglish.

- Advertisement -

“I can’t speculate on our future roadmap but I can tell you the Alexa service is getting smarter every day and we’re working hard to continue to increase her knowledge graph,” Puneesh Kumar, Country Leader for Alexa, Amazon India, told IANS.

“We also encourage more Indian customers to try Cleo skill and help Alexa learn more Indian languages,” he added.

The language-learning skill called Cleo helps customers respond to Alexa in Hindi, Tamil, Marathi, Kannada, Bengali, Telugu, Gujarati and other languages.

The more Indians use Cleo skill, the more the company will improve speech recognition and natural language processing (NLP) in order to prepare its smart assistant on various Echo range of devices, and third-party ones too, speak in other languages as well.

Today, users ask Alexa for diverse Hindi content such as chutkule, shayaris, kahaniya, Kabir ke dohe, Panchatantra stories, Bollywood dialogues and more.

“The customers can switch between English and Hindi when talking to Alexa without changing the language setting from Hindi to English and the other way around every time,” Kumar said.

The complexity and variety of questions in Hindi or Hinglish by customers are 50 percent higher than the range of questions asked by customers in English.

This makes it extremely challenging for the speech science teams to ensure it’s understanding of user requests is optimum.

“The Alexa Speech Science team has used the latest advances in deep neural networks, multi-dialect training, and semi-supervised learning to reduce Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) errors by more than 40 per cent since launch of Hindi last year,” Kumar informed.

It is now equipped with hundreds of new words from the Hindi vocabulary.

The Alexa Natural Language Understanding (NLU) team has been driving numerous initiatives towards improvement of Alexa’s understanding of Hindi.

Such initiatives led to a 30 per cent improvement in NLU accuracy i.e. understanding of customer requests in Hindi or Hinglish and providing the required content.

“There might still be some requests that Alexa might not understand correctly. Our teams are constantly working to make Alexa interactions more seamless,” Kumar noted.


READ ALSO: Apple to celebrate Diwali with 1st India online store on Sep 23

- Advertisement -

Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here


Ep8: Indian links in Indigenous Australian poet Ali Cobby Eckermann’s life

To celebrate NAIDOC week 2020 (between 8-15 November) I spoke to Yakunytjatjara poet Ali Cobby Eckermann about her time in India where she taught...

Ep 7: In the case of Sushant Singh Rajput

  The torrid and high-octane Sushant Singh Rajput case has been fodder for Indian people and press for the last few months. The actor’s tragic...

Ep 6: The Indian LGBTQ+ community in 2020

  It’s been two years since the world’s largest democracy repealed the draconian Section 377 which used to allow discrimination against homosexual people. Only this...

Latest News

wagah border ceremony

WATCH: Attari-Wagah Border Ceremony on India’s 72nd Republic Day

  It's always a sight to behold - watching the daily military practice between Indian and Pakistani forces at the Attari-Wagah border, made special on...
President Joe Biden

Huge relief for spouses of H1B workers in the US

  "Withdrawn". A single word on a thick bureaucratic file on the seventh day of the Biden administration delivered a huge win for spouses of...
kamala's way biography by dan moraine

Book Review: ‘Kamala’s Way’ by Dan Morain

  Just how did the daughter of two immigrants in segregated California became one of this countrys most effective power players? Through the human touch,...
farmers protest, delhi, red fort, flags

Farmers rage in Delhi on Republic Day

  On the morning of Republic Day, farmers were warmly welcomed in Delhi. As pictured below, tractors and cars carrying groups of protesters were showered...
Jeet Ki Zid movie poster

Review: Jeet Ki Zid (Zee5)

  It's easy to like Jeet Ki Zid. The show talks of patriotism and valour, it celebrates will power to triumph against all odds. Importantly,...