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  • Writer's pictureElise Quevedo

Amazon and Disney showcase Hey Disney! during CES

Two powerhouses, Amazon and Disney have joined forces to create more magical moments. Get ready for the new "Hey Disney!" voice assistant.

“Hey Disney!” was first announced in September 2021, and it is a first-of-its-kind voice assistant that will give customers access to a wide range of Disney magic through Echo devices at home, and as a complimentary service at select Disney Resorts hotels.

Amazon offered the public the first sneak peek of the upcoming “Hey Disney!” experience via live demonstrations at CES.

A collaboration between Disney and Amazon, it is a first-of-its-kind voice assistant, called the Disney Magical Companion, that will help fans enjoy experiences featuring more than 20 Disney, Pixar, and Star Wars characters.

Customers will be able to interact with favorites like Mickey Mouse, Dory from “Finding Nemo,” Olaf from “Frozen,” and Mirabel from “Encanto” through an array of jokes, trivia games, and soundscapes.

The technology part

Disney built the experience using the Alexa Custom Assistant, a voice AI foundation upon which the company could easily create its own custom voice assistant that coexists with Alexa.

Access to the service will be through Echo smart speakers at home and Disney Resort hotel rooms.

“Disney is the master storyteller, and its stories are so powerful for so many people,” Aaron Rubenson, a vice president of Alexa said in a press release.

“Now people can keep talking to a character and continue with the storyline when they go back to their room at the end of the day—or when they go home when the vacation is over. It’s gratifying to imagine that we’re a part of literally bringing that magic home.

Available at parks and at home

Guests staying in select Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort hotels will be able to ask questions about park hours, request fresh towels, and access other helpful features.

Since November 2022, “Hey Disney!” has been in limited testing at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort at Walt Disney World.

“Hey Disney!” will also feature support for Disney’s MagicBand+, the smart and interactive wearable device that visitors use at Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort to interact with shows, enter the park, redeem Lightning Lane access, and more.

For example, when you answer trivia questions, MagicBand+ will transform into a game show-style buzzer and reacts with lights and vibrations. It will even light up and buzz when your alarm or timer goes off.

“Hey Disney!” will also be available for customers to purchase later this year in the U.S. in the Alexa Skills Store, along with being included with an Amazon Kids+ subscription in the coming months.

“As a first-of-its-kind voice assistant, Hey Disney! continues Disney’s long tradition of using technology to provide the coolest, most convenient experiences to make your visit better,” said Dan Soto, Disney’s vice president of technology and digital in a press release.

“We’re always looking for new ways to open the door to even more stories, making them richer, more immersive, and forever memorable to guests and fans, whether they are at home or visiting Disney Parks. We can’t wait for fans and families to discover all the surprising and delightful interactions we’ve built into this experience.”

So who is ready for Hey Disney!

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