Alexa may soon play doctor and offer you medicine when you're sick

Amazon's smart assistant set for side gig as personal drug peddler

Alexa may soon play doctor

Look at you, sat there, thinking Alexa cares about your wellbeing. The smart assistant may have your back when you want the local weather or the quickest walking route to McDonald's, but where is it when the chips are down? Where is Alexa when you're ill on the couch and barely remaining conscious through your eighth straight episode of Better Call Saul?

The short answer: nowhere. But Amazon may be looking to improve how it deals with these situations, after it was granted a patent that shows how Alexa may offer drugs (the legal ones) when it recognises you're sick.

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The filing describes a smarter Alexa that's more responsive to the talker's physical and emotional state, recognising if they're excited, bored, or, as we say, have a little cold. If it detects you're under the weather, the assistant may even bark back with suggestions for ordering medicine.

Now, on paper, an exchange like the one below found in Amazon's listing would actually be pretty helpful - especially if you were sick and, say, didn't feel like leaving the house to pick up some cough medicine.

Alexa may soon play doctor and offer you medicine when you're sick

However, with Alexa still in its infancy and struggling to understand more elementary requests (as we detailed in our Amazon Alexa wish list), it feels like it'll be a few years until it's capable of recognising coughs and sore throats when users make requests.

But this kind of development is all part of the gradual evolution of the digital assistant. Alexa may currently sit silent while you splutter all over the house, but with money to be made from peddling drugs in a smart and streamlined manner, this does feel like a feature that's likely to reach Alexa devices in the near future.

Until then, you can use Alexa to help you make a phone call to your doctor and book an appointment, you sap.


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