‘Alexa, play the Queen’s speech’: Christmas address to be available on smart speakers

19 December 2020, 10:02

From 3pm on Christmas Day, people will be able to say "Alexa, play the Queen&squot;s Christmas Day message".
From 3pm on Christmas Day, people will be able to say "Alexa, play the Queen's Christmas Day message". Picture: PA

By Joe Cook

Smart speaker owners will be able to summon the Queen into their homes, as Her Majesty’s traditional Christmas speech becomes available on Amazon’s Alexa smart devices this year.

From 3pm on Christmas Day, people will be able to say "Alexa, play the Queen's Christmas Day message" or "Alexa, play Queen Elizabeth's Christmas Day message".

Owners of Amazon Echo speakers across the Commonwealth will be able to listen to the message, as well as anyone who has set their device British English, American, Australian, Canadian or Indian varieties of English.

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Eric King, director of Alexa Europe, said: "After a challenging year, millions of people from across the Commonwealth will be eagerly awaiting Her Majesty the Queen's message on Christmas Day.

"By creating this world-first innovation, just as we did in 2012 with the release of the Queen's Christmas speech on Kindle, we hope that even more people will be able to enjoy the uplifting words of Her Majesty.

"This really is one for the history books and showcases just how far technology has advanced since the very first speech was delivered back in 1932."

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The annual Christmas Day tradition goes back to 1932, when George V gave a radio broadcast on 25 December 1932.

The speech is one of the rare occasions when the Queen does not turn to the Government for advice and is able to voice her own views.

Like much of 2020, the Queen's message this year is expected to heavily focus on Covid, with the monarch likely to praise the efforts of all sections of society who have been involved in the effort to fight the virus.

As well as Alexa devices, the speech is available on the television, radio and the Royal Family Channel on the YouTube website.

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Her Majesty is not the only royal embracing new technology. This week, Harry and Meghan announced a partnership with Spotify to host and produce podcasts.

Due to the pandemic, the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh will spend Christmas at Windsor for the first time since 1988.

The Queen will also break from her tradition of attending St Mary Magdalene Church on the Sandringham estate during the festive period, near which Rryal fans often gather.