"'How would Alexa behave if Alexa was South African?' This was the question that led us on this year-long journey," says Steph Van Niekerk from Grey / WPP Liquid creative direct.
"What makes this piece of work special is that it's insight-based tech — not just tech for tech's sake. GUGU is the embodiment of that particular brand of spice we are all so familiar with in this country and the result is hilarious and addictive. She has an answer for everything, so we apologise in advance for the loss of productivity users may experience," adds Van Niekerk.
Developed for Savanna by Chakalaka Norris, the spokesperson for Chilled Chilli, GUGU is like Alexa — if Alexa was a certified member of Black Twitter, 'hella spicy'.
But what does GUGU actually do? According to the brand, she can do anything that any other AI can do if you ask her; except she won't because she simply refuses to solve people's problems for them.
This is unless that problem is needing a Savanna Chilled Chilli, then for some reason, if you just ask nicely, she's happy to put you in touch with that spicy game.
Tilesh Bhaga, creative technologist at Creative Grey / WPP Liquid says, "The Gugu voice assistant was built as a progressive web app based on React.js. This allowed for its capabilities to extend further than just a normal website."
"The brains of Gugu lives on a Google AI tool called dialogflow. The user would input a command that was either text or speech, which was then converted to text. This input was then sent to the Goggle AI to interpret the command. Based on the response back from the AI, we would determine the correct audio response to match the text and prompt that," adds Bhaga.
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