Inspiration

A few month ago, I asked my superior how was she getting better at speaking English. Then, She told that to translate Japanese into English instantly is effective method for learning English. After that, I learned how to use this method.

However, it was difficult for me to make a habit of using this method because it is really annoying to prepare textbooks and sound sources everyday and everywhere. In addition, the questions of textbooks and sound sources are limited and the same order every time.

What it does

This skill enables us to practice with original questions which is different each time, and in different order of questions each time.

How I built it

I built it using AWS Lambda and S3. S3 has each users data such as the total numbers of launching this skill and the number of days which they keep launching this skill.

Challenges I ran into

This was my first skill in which has ISP products. In particular, it was too difficult to design the timing when this skill offer the upsell to customers. Receiving upsell every time makes them so disgusted. So, I designed to record the total numbers of launching this skill for each customers which enabled the skill to offer the upsell to them only in the 4th and multiples of 10th time.

The second point is how to let them to continue using this skill every day. Because it is essential to practice English every day for improving English quickly, I had to prepare the gimmick for realizing this in this skill. So, I decided to record the data of the number of days which they keep launching this skill and give them some messages in reward with the cards in Alexa app. These are like "Excellent!", "Keep it up!" and "Great!".

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

  • To prevent users from being tired, I prepared more than 15 questions in each level and 10 questions are selected randomly and not in order every time.

  • To help users to study comfortable and without hesitation, 3 types of voices are used in this skill. One is original Alexa's voice, which has the role of a narrator who tells users how to use this skill. Another is Amazon Polly for JP, "Takumi", which has the role of a question master who tells them the questions in Japanese. The other is also Amazon Polly for US, "Joanna", which has the role of a person who tells them the answers in English. I chose these different-sex persons for simplicity's recognition of the distinction between question and answer.

What I learned

  • Good UX design for using ISP, such a timing of upsell, and so on

  • How to use English utterance in the skill for JP store

What's next for Instant English Composition(瞬間英作文)

I'll add much more patterns of lessen. In the end, I'll add the subscription products which enables users to practice various patterns of more difficult questions randomly. To prepare some categories like business, leisure or technical terms is also interesting.

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