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Alexa virtual assistant returns after service outage

Pic by Andrew Matthews

By Martyn Landi, PA Technology Correspondent

Amazon’s Alexa virtual assistant has come back online after it was hit by a service issue in the UK on Friday morning.

The outage left thousands of users unable to access smart speakers and other devices.

Amazon confirmed that an undisclosed issue had caused the problem but said the service has now been restored.

A spokesman told the PA news agency: “This morning we had an issue that impacted some Alexa customers’ ability to interact with the service.

“The Alexa service is now operating normally.”

According to service status website DownDector, UK users began reporting problems with Alexa at around 7am on Friday, with more than 8,000 reports recorded over the next hour.

Many users said they had been left unable to wake their voice-activated Amazon Echo smart devices, with some seeing a ring of red lights and a message asking them to try again later or that “something went wrong”.

Others took to social media to complain of being unable to use their Alexa-powered gadgets to play music or radio, access alarms and reminders, or carry out other daily tasks.

The virtual assistant is built into millions of devices available in the UK, including smart speakers and home hubs, which can be used to control appliances around the home.

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