Amazon Echo owners may already be worried about the potential for their digital sidekick Alexa to listen in on their conversations at home, but now there’s another reason to get anxious about Alexa technology: She might sporadically laugh at you. According to The Verge, Alexa-enabled devices have been waking up without prompting and laughing, and Amazon is “aware of this and working to fix it.”
If you have an Amazon smart home speaker already, you are probably used to the sound of Alexa’s robot voice, a soothingly artificial lilt. The Alexa laughter, meanwhile, sounds shockingly human, according to user videos posted of the phenomenon. Some people report that it comes completely out of the blue, while others say that it can be a response to an unrelated request, like turning off the lights.
My humble kitchen Echo, meanwhile, has yet to let out a chuckle. When I asked my Echo, “Alexa, what does your laugh sound like?” she merely responded, “Sorry, I don’t know that one.”
“Alexa,” I asked again, “can you laugh for me?”
“Sure,” she finally said, letting out a kind of cartoon-falsetto “teehee!” It wasn't the laughter that other creeped-out Echo users have posted, though.
Mashable has one potential explanation. The oddly human, unprompted laughter could be the result of somehow enabling and triggering an Alexa skill that lets the voice assistant laugh. Hopefully, Amazon will figure out a fix soon, so we can all breathe easily around Alexa again.
[h/t The Verge]