AN AMAZON ECHO SPEAKER has been blamed for starting a "rave" in a sixth floor flat in Hamburg.
The owner was out at a real nightclub when the speaker decided to start blasting out bangin' tunes at top volume at 0150 CET. Neighbours called the police who broke down the door to find no one in, just the Alexa speaker havin' it large all on its own.
There was no one to push the button. There was no one to say "Alexa" and wake it up, let alone say "Alexa play Meine Grossehappyhardcore Playlist at top volume".
Speaking to German paper Die Welt, the flat (and speaker) owner, Oliver Haberstroh explained that he'd not had any problems with the digital task monkey up until this point.
Neighbours raised the alarm after shouting and banging on the door didn't work.
With voice assistants still in their relative infancy, there are always going to be teething problems, but it does seem that Alexa, despite its popularity with nearly three quarters of the market, is more prone to speaking out of turn, as anyone who has seen an advert for a Lexus on the TV will testify.
More seriously, because of its direct links to Amazon's wealth of shopping, if not set up correctly (with a PIN) it has been known to buy stuff. Last year we reported that a news anchor, reporting on an accidental purchase by a little girl, repeated the words "Alexa I want a dolls house" triggering viewers to suddenly receive dolls houses of their own.
More recently a parrot managed to mimic its owner's voice with such conviction that it was able to place an order through Alexa.
Meanwhile, Herr Haberstroh has been contacted by Amazon who were able to work out what had happened. A spokesman told us
"Working directly with the customer, we have identified the reason for the incident. Echo was remotely activated and the volume increased through the customer's third party mobile music-streaming app.
"Although the Alexa cloud service worked flawlessly, Amazon has offered the customer to cover the cost for the incident." µ
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Tens of people inconvenienced