What Exactly Can You Do With Your New Amazon Echo?
Find Out How to Embrace the Full Smart Home Experience
At the end of 2017, Amazon announced that the Echo Dot was the bestselling product on its website during the holiday season. Whether you were at an office White Elephant gift exchange or visiting a distant cousin, a version of these smart speakers likely exchanged hands at some point.
Now households around Pennsylvania find themselves with an impressive gadget that they don't know how to use. You can ask it to Google stuff for you, update your shopping list, or tell you the time.
But the best part of an Amazon Echo isn’t its standalone features; it’s when you integrate it with the rest of your smart home technology. Then, the possibilities are endless. It could lock your doors, turn lights on and off, and adjust the thermostat.
In this blog, we showcase some of the unique ways you can take advantage of your brand-new present.
Start Practicing Your Smart Skills
Get started by exploring the “skills” available on Alexa. These are a close equivalent to the apps on your smartphone. You can use a Lyft skill to call a car, play the daily Sports! Jeopardy or relax after work with a guided meditation.
Once you’ve added a skill, all you have to do is say "Alexa, play (name of skill"). Sometimes, the commands are more intuitive. Instead of asking for the Lyft skill, just tell Alexa that you need a ride.
It’s Time to Extend Your Skills
Once you’ve gotten the gist of how to add and call up individual commands, it’s time to up your smart home skills. That’s because skills are also the way you can integrate your favorite devices.
Take for example another popular Christmas gift last year: Sonos. These wireless speakers make it easy for you to stream your favorite music in every corner of your home. Since there’s an Alexa skill for Sonos, you can now manage your wireless sound system through simple voice commands!
You can find similar skills for the most popular smart home technologies on the market including the Nest Thermostat and Ring Video Doorbell.
Extend Your Reach with Smart Scenes
What if you want to control more than one thing at a time through an Alexa command? You can do this by installing a Control4 home automation system.
Control4 lets you create scenes to manage multiple devices simultaneously. For example, a “Welcome“ scene can lower the temperature, turn on the lights leading to your living room and lock the door behind you.
Once you've created the scene through your Control4 system, all you have to do is say "Alexa, play Welcome."
How Can You Get Started?
The best way to get the most out of your new gift is to reach out to a home technology professional. We can help you figure out which devices are compatible with your Amazon Echo and set up the necessary skills to transform your smart speaker into a virtual assistant.
Need more help setting up your new Echo or any other gifts you received during the holiday season? From smart lights to Ultra HD TVs, we can help you get everything up and running.