Alexa may soon be able to tell when you're sick

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Amazon Alexa can do many different things, but the virtual assistant may soon be able to detect when you’re sick.

Amazon reportedly patented a version of its virtual assistant Alexa that will have the ability to automatically detect when you might be sick.

The new Alexa feature would be able to analyze your speech and determine signs of illness.

According to the Amazon patent, the example shows a woman coughing and sniffling while speaking to her Amazon virtual assistant device. Alexa is able to detect the distress in her voice and offers her a chicken soup recipe. When the woman declines, Alexa offers to order cough drops with one-hour delivery. The woman agrees and Alexa places an order for cough drops via Amazon and tells her to feel better.

 

According to the Telegraph, advertisements for different cold products can be automatically played whenever Alexa detects you sound like you’re getting sick.

New Amazon Alexa patent

Amazon Alexa patent. Future Alexa can tell when you're sick

In addition to Alexa recognizing your coughs and sneezes and suggesting ways to help you feel better, the patent also describes a future Alexa that could track your emotions. Amazon sees Alexa as a virtual assistant that could tell when you’re bored or tired and then make suggestions for you to make you feel better.

Another example in the filed patent,  the Alexa users asks, “What’s going on today?” and Alexa determines the user is bored and asks the user if they’re in the mood for a movie.

While the recently patented Alexa feature could potentially help users when they’re sick or bored, it also works for Amazon. The company will be able to offer customers more options to purchase items via voice shopping. In June, The Wall Street Journal reported that Amazon is buying online pharmacy PillPack which will give Amazon the ability to ship prescription medications around the country. If Alexa gets the ability to detect when you’re sick in the future, it could easily ask you if you want to refill your prescription and send you your meds. 

When will Alexa be able to detect when you're sick?

According to Amazon, the patent on the Alexa feature is filed and approved by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, but there is no official word for when the feature will be released. 

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