What we can learn from Google Assistant about sounding natural

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Last week Google's CEO demonstrated a conversation between Google Assistant (a machine) and a real person (a real person).
The conversation was so smooth and natural that the woman on the other side of the phone did not even suspect she was NOT speaking with a real person.

It got me thinking….
What made Google Assistant's voice so natural and so freakishly real?
And what we, as non-native speakers can learn from the choices made by those who developed this AI technology?
In other words – if it works for Assistant, it can work for you.

In the video, I'm going to analyze the conversation phrase by phrase, and illustrate how speech elements like intonation, phrasing, connected speech, upspeak and filler words were so effectively used.

let me know in the comments below the video what other elements of speech/ phrases/ fillers words do you hear people use that make them sound natural?

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6 Comments on “What we can learn from Google Assistant about sounding natural”

  1. WOW that’s is wonderful. What can I say? It makes me more appreciate the beauty of both English and technology.

  2. It’s really interesting the cacteristics of a native speaker coming from a robot and I want to tell you that it was a geeat idea to add that record in your videos for teaching. I’m a teacher, when I see something different, new and usefull that brings inovation in teaching I love to recognize and encourage the author.
    God bless you!

  3. There’s one detail I’ve noticed that you don’t point out 🙂 and might be interesting(?): after the 1st sentence, the assistant makes a “thinking sound”, like she has some doubt “humm” or something like that. In my opinion, this kind of noises add a lot of “reality” to the thing. What do you think about it?

  4. I understand your analysis of the conversation and all elements of speech that makes it appear natural . But what I admire really was the flow of the words and their rythems that makes me feel the great ability to attract the lestner making him never expect the talker to be a robot .

  5. Native speakers use filler words such as: I mean, well, fantastic, so on, cool, great, I see, well done…

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