Does Amazon’s Super Bowl commercial mean Raleigh’s out of the running for HQ2?

Did Raleigh miss out?

Amazon’s Super Bowl ad launched widespread speculation that the company had made its choice for the city that will be home to its second headquarters.

The ad shows Amazon’s personal assistant device “Alexa” losing her voice while delivering the weather report for Austin.

Austin is one of the top 20 cities Amazon is considering for its second headquarters – out of 238 bids from cities across North America. Raleigh also made the top 20 for the $5 billion, 50,000-employee HQ2.

“In Austin, it’s sixty degrees, with a cha –” Amazon’s Alexa says at the beginning of the ad. She’s interrupted mid-forecast with a cough, which sets up the rest of the commercial featuring celebrities filling in for Alexa.

Some, like Texas Monthly, are convinced it’s an Easter egg hinting that Amazon has made its choice: “It’s a big ol’ clue, as far as we’re concerned.”

Texas Monthly goes on to use the appearance of country music and peacocks as further evidence that Amazon is favoring Austin: “This ad, in our estimation, bodes poorly for the mayors of nineteen other cities in the running for Amazon’s HQ2.”

The Dallas Observer asked Alexa herself which Texas city she favors.

“I'm glad you asked,” she says. “It’s all about Austin.”


Atlanta, Ga.

Austin, Texas

Boston, Mass.

Chicago, Ill.

Columbus, Ohio

Dallas, Texas

Denver, Colo.

Indianapolis, Ind.

Los Angeles, Calif.

Miami, Fla.

Montgomery County, Md.

Nashville, Tenn.

Newark, N.J.

New York, N.Y.

Northern Virginia, Va.

Philadelphia, Pa.

Pittsburgh, Pa.

Raleigh, N.C.

Toronto, Ontario

Washington, D.C.