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You'll soon hear 8 new voices in Amazon Alexa skills

A still of the amazon echo dot smart speaker
(Image credit: Amazon)

Amazon Alexa skills are getting a new voice. Eight new voices, to be exact. 

That's thanks to the Amazon Polly text-to-speech service, which Amazon is officially opening up to developers as part of a free preview. 

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The eight voices will be in US English and will give devs who use them a chance to liven up their Alexa skills.

This could include using multiple voices for different characters in a game, or simply having a voice other than the standard Alexa tone. 

Amazon Polly's "natural-sounding voices" should bring a new dimension to Amazon Echo products, though it may not be quite enough to compete with Google Assistant.

Just last week at its big developer conference, Google announced Assistant is getting six new voices, including celebrity appearances from the likes of John Legend.

This is in addition to Google's impressive and somewhat unsettling Google Duplex AI chatbot, which will use Google Assistant to make phone calls for you. 

The battle between Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa for voice assistant supremacy shows no signs of slowing down, and now it seems one important new front is which assistant has the most life-like voices.