Amazon Opening Alexa Lab In U.K.

Amazon announced the opening of a new Development Centre site with 400 staff in the university city of Cambridge this autumn to develop technologies including Alexa.

The Seattle-based e-commerce giant announced on Thursday that it intends to open a 60,000 sq ft office in the heart of the city. The company already has a sizable R&D facility.

The highly-skilled employees will include machine learning scientists, knowledge engineers, data scientists, mathematical modellers, speech scientists and softwareengineers. Amazon said it is currently recruiting extensively in Cambridge as part of its expansion plans in the city.

The new Amazon lab will be based at One The Square located in the CB1 business district adjacent to Cambridge train station. The company noted that teams of experts working on devices such as Kindle, Fire tablet, Fire TV Stick, Echo, Echo Dot and the new Echo Look, as well as Alexa, will move to the new larger site starting this autumn.

Amazon’s existing R&D lab in Cambridge will be used exclusively for Prime Air, Amazon’s delivery drone initiative.

Doug Gurr, UK Country Manager for Amazon, in a statement said, “We are constantly inventing on behalf of our customers, and our Development Centres in Cambridge, Edinburgh and London play a major role in Amazon’s global innovation story.”

Amazon also announced on Thursday that it has invested 6.4 billion pounds across the UK since 2010. The company has also pledged to create 5,000 new permanent roles this year across the country, bringing its full time workforce to 24,000.

Minister of State for Digital and Culture Matt Hancock added, “This is fantastic news — Amazon’s increased investment in developing cutting-edge technology in Cambridge is another vote of confidence in the UK as a world-leading centre of invention and innovation.”

by RTT Staff Writer

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