PRAGUE, Czech Republic, April 26, 2011 – What do you do when the "avast! virus database has been updated" message comes from your computer in the morning?
Aubrey Anthony, head of customer service at a California internet service provider, used to just imitate the message – but then she got an inspiration: "I told my boyfriend … what do you think about me being the voice for AVAST Software?"
The two came up with a quick answer. "We both decided it would be so cool and he told me to go for it," remembered Aubrey. So she sent AVAST Software the following message:
The reason I am emailing is that it is my dream to be the next "avast! virus database has been updated" voice. It would be so awesome!
"I sent the email to AVAST not expecting to hear back," stated Aubrey. But, she did get a message back – along with an invitation to send in her recording of the avast! audio announcements. An enthusiastic Aubrey enlisted a DJ friend at her local radio station to make the recordings. "Try saying ‘potentially’ with a big smile on your face, it is near to impossible!" she added.
Her recordings were added to the English language versions of the new avast! 7.0. "With around 30 million people using avast! in English, there are a lot of people that could be hearing Aubrey’s voice," said Julia Szymanska, avast! community manager. "It’s amazing that avast! has room for our users to contact us and become ‘The Voice’ for millions of people. This will happen more often because we’ve made it much easier in the new 7.0 for people to add their own voices to the program."
For Aubrey, having a global voice makes life more fun at home and in the office. "When I heard my voice for the first time I was so excited. I ran around the house jumping up and down like Tigger from Winnie the Pooh. It was such a rush," said Aubrey. "At work, every customer that knows me tells me congratulations. They think it is awesome! So do I!"
And now that Aubrey is the new English voice for avast! she has changed her morning computer routine. She no longer imitates the avast! voice – but she certainly hasn’t muted the incoming "avast! virus database has been updated" announcement. "It comes through loud and clear," she said. "I reply now ‘Thank you Aubrey’."