You’re using your Amazon Echo wrong.
I don’t care if it’s the Echo 2nd gen or the Echo dot. You’re using it wrong.
Like millions of other homeowners, you purchased the Amazon Echo or Echo Dot. The first thing you did was train it to recognize your voice—including where you emphasize vowels, slur your consonants, or at which volume you usually speak.
Then you connect your Spotify account, train it to emit cat sounds to prank your kitty, show off to your friends how you can ask it the weather (should I wear a sweater or a coat today, Alexa?) …and then tiredly use it to listen to your Spotify playlist for months.
A glorified speaker is not worth the investment.
You may be thinking, ‘who are you to deprive me of playing tricks on my cat?’. Well, I’m not. I’m all there for that. But using your Echo solely for these party tricks is a disappointment to every futuristic and smart sentiment out there—like using your car to warm/cool you while you listen to music on cinder blocks.
You’re using it wrong.
There are literally tens of thousands of skills Alexa can perform for your sole convenience. Not only should you be using it to order your coffee, tell you the weather, play music, read your audio-book out loud, answer questions, remind you of your calendar, and add things to your shopping list (phew, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg), you should be creating the integrated smart home experience where the Echo really shines.
If you think asking the weather is a neat party trick, watch how your friends light up when you turn your lights on/off with your voice.
Or how envious they are of your electric bill, because your Echo automatically adjusts the temperature of your smart thermostat according to the weather that day (yeah, that can save you a surprising amount over time).
Not to mention how peaceful vacations could be now that you can check on your home with your Echo and smart home cameras. You can even schedule your Echo and smart lights to turn off/on your lights while you’re away to suggest you’re home.
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Using your Echo to operate smart-home devices is the beginning of the right way to use your Echo. If you haven’t connected your Alexa to your phone and your smart home equipment, you’re doing it WRONG.
You may be wondering how-what-when (like when I’ll stop giving awesome examples of how cool smart home tech is)? Well, if you’ve been using it wrong, it’s understandable you’d be wondering where to start and access all this power.
Use a professional. It’s super easy. An established company like Vivint Smart Home can help you purchase, install, and learn to operate smart home equipment. They can help you connect your Echo to your devices and show you how to work your integrated system if you don’t feel you quite have it.
Furthermore, they can offer you 24/7 home security monitoring. They can respond to emergencies if you can’t.
To get connected to free quotes, consultations, and the best home professional crew for you, simply fill out the form below.
The amazing thing is, your Echo will integrate with many different types of smart home devices including Samsung, Phillips, Honeywell, Ring, Nest, and Schlage. It’s incredibly adaptable and efficient.
All you do is pair your smart home devices to your Alexa apps.
Smart lightbulbs are easily the best way to start because they are affordable and easy to set up. So if you’ve been using your Echo wrong, start here. And don’t start with “oh but it’s so expensive.”
No, it’s not. That bridge has pretty much been closed. For the perks of an LED bulb, such as energy savings, extended life, and better lighting, you can get a 16 pack of Philips LEDs (60 watt equivalent) for $30, or less than $2/bulb.
You’re saving money on the bulbs when you consider all that. And though smart bulbs with more options (such as colors, dimming, and smart home interactions) may be more, they will save you money for the same reasons as listed above AND you can use them with your Echo…which basically makes them infinitely more worth it. They’re just so much smarter to purchase.
You can even use the Echo Plus to officially act as a smart home hub. While the Echo can kind of act like a hub in the way it can operate your smart home devices, the Echo Plus allows devices, that need a proprietary hub on the Zigbee protocol, to actually connect to your Echo Plus. Which means you don’t have to buy a compatible hub for those smart home pieces.
Like I said, you’ve really been going about Alexa all wrong if you haven’t checked into and set some of this up for yourself.
If you don’t already own one, putting a Fire TV/Fire TV Stick on your birthday or Christmas wishlist is a good idea.
Your Echo device with Alexa can control those Fire TV devices—which means you remotely control your TV with your voice. So if you don’t have access to your Fire TV phone app or your remote, (or you simply don’t want to get up to retrieve them—I’m not judging), you can easily command Alexa to turn on your TV, find shows you want to watch, skip to scenes, etc.
And that’s not even the extent of it.
Depending on the type of car you drive, you can also command Alexa to turn on the engine, turn on and off the headlights, and lock your doors from the safety of your own home or office. So if it’s cold and you want to get your car heated up a few minutes before you head out, simply command your Echo to turn on your car.
And for even newer models that have Alexa, or a built-in infotainment system compatible with Alexa, you can learn how much gas you have left in your car, set the temperature of your car, and more.
Nissan, Mercedes, Hyundai, BMW, Genesis, and Jeep are some car manufacturers that are known to support this function.
I could go on, but do you really need more convincing?
An Amazon Echo and Echo Dot have so much potential, and the sorry fact is that many are operating way below their potential—either from operator ignorance or apathy.
But you’re not either of those things. So, what are you waiting for?
So maybe you’ve found you’re using your Echo wrong.
Don’t worry, it’s not embarrassing, no one knows about it but you.
Turn your glorified speaker into the smart hub it was meant to be. Use the professional help out there to make your life easier. Find a professional and transform your life—fill out the form below and do your Echo right.