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8 surprising Alexa tricks to try with your Amazon Echo tonight



  30-Amazon Echo Studio

Your Amazon Echo can create playlists for you. Sarah Tew / CNET

Just when you thought you knew everything you needed to know about you Amazon Echo ̵

1; all funny things to ask Alexa how to turn on your TV with only your voice and how to operate your smart home devices – here comes another batch. Your Alexa speech assistant has a few more tricks in store that you may not know yet.

For example, did you know that you can hold something on your Amazon Echo Show ($ 230 with Amazon) and Alexa can tell you what it is? Or that you can tell your Echo speaker to create a playlist for you without ever picking up your phone?

It may take a while to learn all the things that your Amazon Echo and its voice assistant can do, but for now there are eight Echo tricks that we have put together and that you are now starting to try.

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Create a playlist right away

Creating a new playlist can take a while – you have to think about the songs you want to add, search for the titles, and add them manually to the playlist you just created. So instead of quickly tapping as many numbers as possible, ask your Echo to add them for you.

While you are doing other things, such as household chores or playing video games, you simply say, "Alexa, create a new playlist." You have to come up with a name for the playlist, such as & # 39; Favorite rock songs from the 90s & # 39 ;. If you want to add a song to the playlist, it must be played on your smart speaker. So if you want to add Weezer & # 39; s Say It Ain & # 39; t So to your playlist, you must first ask Alexa to play it and then say, "Alexa, add this song to my playlist."

Once your playlist is complete and you are ready to listen, simply say, "Alexa, play [name of playlist]."

Get the traffic details for your morning-to-work traffic

Knowing which route you have to take in the morning to work is important, especially if you have a daily commuter traffic that takes you through the busiest part drive from the city. Fortunately, before you go out the door in the morning, you can ask Alexa what the traffic looks like.

You must add your work location to the Alexa app so that Alexa can give you the best route advice. Open the Alexa app menu and select Settings . Then scroll down and tap Traffic and enter the address where you are going (such as your home or favorite coffee shop) to go to your destination (work address).

When you are ready to leave the house, simply say, "Alexa, what is my traffic?" and Alexa gives you the fastest route and the estimated time needed to get to work.

Whisper to Alexa

If everyone is sleeping in your house or if you just don't want to hear the loud answers from your speaker, try whispering to Alexa. For example, if you want to know what time it is when you wake up without looking at a clear screen, just whisper "Alexa, what time is it?" That's all you have to do to whisper Alexa back.

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The Echo Input turns any speaker into an Alexa-compatible device. Ry Crist / CNET

Turn any speaker into an echo

If you already have a speaker with great sound quality and you are not yet ready to get an echo speaker, you can simply use an echo input ($ 35 on Amazon) Use until Make your speaker into an Alexa device .

By doing one of these things, your current speaker has access to Alexa. To use it with your favorite speaker, connect it to the auxiliary cord supplied with the device or connect it to the speaker via Bluetooth.

Location-based routines

Whether you need to send an important e-mail when you go to work or need a reminder to feed the dog when you get home, you can set a routine to remember as soon as you arrive at your destination.

To set up a routine, open the Alexa app menu and tap Routines . Select the plus sign icon in the upper right corner and enter the routine name (for example, Send Email ). Then select When This Happens and tap Location . Select Arrives or Browse and choose your work or home address. Tap Next and then select Add action . If you set a reminder, select Alexa says and create a custom answer.

Note that you can also create routines that start with your voice activation, an alarm, a specific time or another trigger. You can also set actions to do things such as starting your Alexa-supported robot vacuum cleaner or lowering the thermostat temperature when you leave the house.

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Chris Monroe / CNET

Useful functions exclusive to the Amazon Echo Show

Amazon & # 39; s Echo Show (from $ 70 on Amazon) has its own cool functions that are not available on the other Echo devices due to the touchscreen. For example, you can communicate with Alexa without ever saying a word. Here are some other useful things you can do with your Echo Show.

Tap your command instead of saying it

If you ever have trouble getting Alexa to understand what you are saying, simply enable the function Tap to Alexa . This allows you to type a command instead of speaking and you can easily access one-touch shortcuts on the screen.

For example, instead of saying, "Alexa, what's the weather today?" you can simply tap the weather icon to get the forecast quickly. This can be useful if you want to get information at a glance instead of waiting for Alexa to read the whole story about the weather.

To enable Tap Alexa open the settings of your Echo Show and select Accessibility . Then scroll down and switch the Tap to switch to Alexa and tap Continue . You can move it Tap the Alexa icon until you find the best place.

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Make sure the Echo Show camera is turned on before using the Show and Tell function.


Chris Monroe / CNET

Show-and-tell

If you have an Amazon Echo Show, it can now recognize your household pantry items such as a can of soup. This feature has been developed to help blind and partially sighted people identify a specific object. Alexa can name items using advanced computer vision and machine learning technologies for object recognition.

First, make sure your camera is on and ask, "Alexa, what am I holding?" The voice assistant then gives you instructions on where to hold the item, how close it should be to the camera, and when you want to show different sides of the product.

I tried this with two items – a pack of oatmeal and a tube of lip balm. When I showed it the oatmeal, Alexa could tell me "cinnamon bun", http://www.cnet.com/, "measure" and "pouch", but couldn't identify the brand. When I showed it the lip balm, Alexa was able to determine that it was Blistex mediated lip balm.

Turn off the screen

The screen of your Echo Show remains constantly on when it is connected, which can be frustrating if you try to fall asleep at night or need to stay focused while working. And although you can dim your device, it doesn't always help. Fortunately, you can turn off your screen without turning off the device by saying, "Alexa, turn off the screen." To turn the screen back on, you can tap the screen or use the keyword from your speaker.

Now that you have mastered these Amazon Echo tips, here are six things that you have not tried with your Echo speaker seven shocking things that you still cannot do on your Amazon Echo and four places to never place your Echo in your house.


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