Amazon’s Alexa Celebrates Canada Day, iOS App Gains Voice Control

Amazon’s Alexa is ready to help celebrate Canada Day with Canadians for the first time, as users can now ask the virtual assistant some localized questions.

Starting today, you can now ask Alexa about her knowledge of Canada—here are some example questions to ask:

  • “Alexa, sing O Canada”
  • “Alexa, happy Canada Day”
  • “Alexa, what should I do for Canada Day?”
  • “Alexa, what are you doing for Canada Day?”
  • “Alexa, tell me a Canadian tongue twister”
  • “Alexa, tell me a Canadian joke”
  • “Alexa, tell me a Canadian limerick”
  • “Alexa, what’s your favourite Canadian food?”
  • “Alexa, who are your favourite Canadians?”

Amazon says there are also a variety of Alexa skills to help you with your Canada Day party, such as this list of drink and food skills.

For Canada Day-themed music, you can just ask, “Alexa, play the Made in Canada: The Essentials” on Prime Music to hear a mix of Canadian classics by local artists, such as Shawn Mendes, Drake, Alanis Morrissette, and The Tragically Hip.

Alexa iOS App Gains Voice Control, Finally

If you’re a user of the Alexa iOS app, the latter was updated yesterday to gain voice controls. Now you can just tap the Alexa button and use your voice to ask the assistant to play music, check the weather, read the news and more.

To get started you will be required to grant permission to the app to access your microphone and location. Voice control is neat, but it requires you to have the app open, unlike Siri which is built into iOS.

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The Alexa app for Android gained voice control about two years ago, and at the time the company said the feature would make its way to iPhone (via TechCrunch). After a lengthy delay, it has finally arrived on iOS, but again you do need to tap the Alexa button to initiate the virtual assistant.

Click here to download Alexa for iOS in the App Store.