On November 19th, Amazon launched the “multilingual mode” of the voice service Alexa in Japan. You can switch the Alexa language of the Amazon Echo series to two languages, Japanese + English, by saying “Alexa, speak in Japanese and English” or by setting from the Alexa app.

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    Alexa of Amazon Echo series supports response in Japanese and English bilingual (photo is 4th generation “Echo Dot with clock”)

To use the multilingual mode, you need to make settings for each device. In addition to talking to the Echo series as described above, from the latest version of the Alexa app, go to “Devices”> “All devices”, select the device you want to set to multilingual mode, and tap “Japanese / English” in “Language”. Then, the language of the device is switched to “Japanese + English” and the multilingual mode is enabled.

For the Echo Show series with a screen, swipe the screen from top to bottom, go to Settings> Device Options> Device Language, and tap “Japanese / English” to activate it. It is necessary to update the device software to the latest one when using it.

After setting the multilingual mode, if you speak to Alexa in English, you will respond in English, and if you speak in Japanese, you will respond in Japanese. You don’t have to switch language settings every time. An example of how to talk is as follows.

  • “Alexa, good morning”
    (Alexa, good morning)
  • “Alexa, what time is it?”
    (Alexa, what time is it now?)
  • “Alexa, what’s the weather?”
    (Alexa, how’s the weather?)
  • “Alexa, set a timer for 10 minutes”
    (Alexa, with a 10 minute timer)
  • “Alexa, play rock music from 80s”
    (Alexa, with 80’s rock)
  • “Alexa, how do I spell government?”
    (Alexa, tell me the spelling of )
  • “Alexa, how do you say cucumber in Japanese?”
    (Alexa, what is in Japanese?)

To return to “Japanese” only mode, say “Alexa, stop speaking in English” or change the language from the Alexa app or device with a screen to “Japanese” in the same way as above.

The multilingual mode is not currently compatible with the first-generation Echo, Echo Dot, Echo Auto, Fire TV series, and Fire tablet series.

Amazon is developing a multilingual mode so that Alexa can support more languages. In addition to this “Japanese + English”, “French + English”, “German + English”, “Italian” The service is also provided in each of the languages ​​”+ English”, “Spanish + English”, and “Hindi + English”.