If you want to enhance your lifestyle with an amazing piece of technology that speeds up your daily chores, then Amazon Echo is there for you. Amazon’s Echo is brand of smart speakers that has been developed by Amazon. It is a voice activated home audio speaker system that has both WiFi connectivity and Bluetooth. The voice control system on the Amazon Echo speakers is called Alexa. Just like Cortana, Google Now, Siri, Alexa is the wake word or personal voice assistant on Amazon Echo. Alexa’s digital voice system will happily fulfill any commands given, starting from setting up an alarm, playing music to even searching to internet for answering questions asked to it.
Within the Amazon Echo devices, there are microphones that feature enhanced noise cancellation and also far field voice recognition. This means that one can ask Alexa any question from any direction, even if the music is playing then, and she will be able to hear the question.
Do you need WIFI for Alexa?
Alexa is always on and is always connected with the WiFi allowing it to sit on one’s home network and Bluetooth and cloud services, letting one stream music from one’s phone. Alexa can do a variety of work like deliver news, provide information , play music, help Prime members to order the products they have already ordered before, deliver sports scores, tell the weather etc, can integrate with one’s Google calendar etc. Alexa updates through cloud automatically, and can she learns all the time. While some of the skills have been built in, others have been enabled in the Alexa app. The more a person uses Amazon Echo, the more Alexa adapts to the vocabulary, preferences speech patterns of the person using it.
Is there any subscription cost involved to use Echo?
You don’t need to pay subscription fee to use Echo, but if you are an Amazon Prime member ($99.00 a year), then you get several benefits out of it. Prime members can enjoy free music. You just need to install a free echo app for your PC, Tablet, or smartphone.
What are the best Amazon Alexa Skills to enable?
Users can ask Alexa to do a lot of things. Skills which is a feature of the Alexa App allows one to customise one’s Echo device with capabilities or interests that suit to one’s preferences. Within the Skills section of the app, there are many categories like Food & Drink, Music & Audio, Connected Car, Smart Home etc. One just has to tap Enable Skill when he or she finds the best suited option for himself or herself, to get started.
Enabling a new skill on Amazon Echo
Just similar to an app, each skill users enable helps them do things, like ask various information, entertainment, games, devices and many more.
To “download” a new skill, users need to say: “Alexa, enable [name of the skill]”
In order to play any trivia game just say, “Alexa, enable True or False?” The app will open up the game and you can start playing it straight away.
There are many companies that offer partnerships with the Amazon Echo devices. For example, Uber, Just Eat , National Rail, The Telegraph, Sky Sports are some companies that are partners with Amazon Echo. If one has Alexa- compatible devices on at one’s home or any of the three major smart home hubs like Insteon, Wink and SmartThings, then adding an Amazon Echo can make accessing those devices way more convenient and interesting.