Hey, Disney Custom Alexa Assistant Rolls Out at Disney World
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Walt Disney World has begun installing its new “Hey Disney!” voice assistant in Amazon Echo Show smart displays after first announcing the project last fall. The Alexa custom assistant is accessible in a limited number of rooms at the Polynesian Village part of the hotel complex but will soon expand to the rest of the resort.
The branded voice assistant augments the Disney-built features and services with Alexa’s AI as support. It’s designed with resort guests in mind, offering messages from characters when they return to their room, answering logistical questions about the parks, and providing concierge services for things like extra towels. The Disney Magical Companion acts as a host and MC for the voice AI, introducing the user to a collection of more than 25 Disney characters, including Disney-owned brands like Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and the Muppets. The alarms, weather reports, and other Alexa features replace the standard voice with a relevant character; Olaf the snowman gives weather reports, for instance. Overall, Disney promises more than 1,0000 conversations, stories, games, jokes, and other interactions.
The role of the voice at Disney resorts has since grown to include access through the MagicBand+ wearable device for those exploring Disney’s theme parks. Disney’s voice assistant will also eventually be available from home Echo devices as well. Those with an Amazon Kids+ subscription or who activate it through the Alexa Skills Store will be able to use the voice assistant too.
“Since the beginning, people have felt a powerful connection to the Disney brand,” Disney Parks experiences and products chairman Josh D’Amaro said last year.”As we build original, state-of-the-art experiences that further expand our favorite stories and even tell brand new ones, we look forward to a future filled with connections, endless possibilities and magic for Disney fans everywhere.”