Amazon now has an enormous vary of Echo gadgets, and there are many different devices which now include Alexa in-built from TVs to headphones and even automotive stereos. It means the digital assistant is quick turning into omnipresent. However even when you have simply the one Echo speaker, there’s lots you are able to do with Alexa.

Whether or not you wish to know the fundamental instructions for controlling music, by means of to establishing a routine so a number of issues occur while you say a customized phrase, we’ll clarify the whole lot it is advisable know. Listed below are our ideas and tips for utilizing Alexa.

We’re assuming that you’ve got already arrange your Echo and have the Alexa app in your telephone. It is properly price spending a short while operating by means of the ‘Issues to Strive’ part, which you will discover if you happen to faucet the menu button within the top-left nook.

You probably have an Echo Present – certainly one of Amazon’s sensible shows – you will see Issues to Strive seem on the backside of the display. Sadly, there is no such thing as a possibility to show these off, however for probably the most half they’re helpful reminders of what you may say, in addition to options of latest options chances are you’ll not have used but.

Best Echo Tips & Tricks

Issues to Strive – within the Alexa app – is split up into many classes so simply decide one and take a look at saying just a few instructions. One part to take a look at is ‘What’s New’ as this tells you the newest options.

From setting timers and alarms to discovering out info and changing items and measurements, Alexa may be helpful in lots of conditions (particularly when cooking).

Best Echo Tips & Tricks

Prime tip: You should say Alexa first, however there’s no have to pause and wait.  It’s no use saying “Cease the timer, Alexa” as all she is going to hear is “Alexa” with no command afterwards.

For instance you may say “Alexa, what’s the climate on Sunday”. So long as you watch to see that the blue LEDs have lit as much as point out she has heard her identify, preserve talking.

We’ve put collectively a quick-start checklist of what you may say to Alexa.

Alexa ideas: Music & radio

One of many Echo’s essential options is enjoying music. By default, Alexa will play from Amazon Music. However when you have a Spotify subscription you may say “Alexa, play Billie Jean from Spotify” to specify which service to make use of. You’ll have to configure your Spotify account first, so open the primary menu within the Alexa app and faucet on Settings > Music & Media. The identical goes for Apple Music.

Faucet on certainly one of these providers after which on ‘LINK YOUR ACCOUNT’.

Alexa additionally helps TuneIn, and this implies you may take heed to the radio. BBC radio is not accessible on TuneIn however you may nonetheless hear by saying “Alexa play Radio 2” and it’ll begin enjoying. TuneIn is used for different radio stations, so your favorite FM or digital radio station needs to be there. 

Prime tip: You probably have multiple Echo, you may add them to a bunch and have music play in sync on some or all of them. You’ll discover the choice to create a bunch beneath Units > Speaker Teams.

Best Echo Tips & Tricks

Prime tip: You may inform Alexa to play music on a particular Echo when you have multiple. First, be sure to’ve named your Echo. Normally it is sensible to call it after the room it’s in. Do that beneath Settings > Machine Settings > [Your Echo device] > Edit Title.

Then you may say “Alexa, play festive music in all places” or “Alexa, play 90s music within the lounge”.

You will see what’s enjoying presently on the display of an Echo Present or Spot, however you may ask “Alexa, activate Tune ID” to get her to announce the tune artist and monitor title at first of every tune.

Reminders and lists

Alexa can remind you of issues. Simply say “Alexa, remind me to pay my TV licence tomorrow at 11am”. Clearly you gained’t hear the reminder if you happen to’re not inside earshot, however she is going to remind you at the moment nonetheless.

It’s also possible to examine these reminders within the Alexa app, after all, in order that they don’t disappear after the set time and date.

Lists are separate to reminders. There are two: Buying and To-do. Simply ask Alexa to place one thing on an inventory by saying “Alexa, add cornflakes to my buying checklist”. Then, while you’re within the grocery store you may examine the checklist inside the app.

Best Echo Tips & Tricks

The to-do checklist isn’t subtle sufficient to incorporate deadlines, however you may equally say “Alexa, add put out the bins to my to-do checklist”.


In addition to Alexa’s core capabilities, you may allow much more by wanting by means of the library of Abilities.There are hundreds, however some require you to have {hardware} (corresponding to a wise gentle or change) or a subscription to a selected service. Most, although, are fully free to make use of and can work right away.

They embody the whole lot from a Ability to examine prepare occasions by means of to video games and ‘foolish’ options like Meow Meow, the place Alexa will make cat noises.

If you happen to already know the identify of the talent simply say “Alexa allow the [name of skill] talent”. In any other case, within the Alexa app, from the primary menu select Abilities & Video games and flick through or search. Star rankings assist to see whether or not others assume it is a good talent or not.

Best Echo Tips & Tricks

It’s also possible to create and customise your personal private Alexa expertise, which is nice for when you’ve gotten home company or when it is somebody’s birthday.

This is the right way to make a Ability with Alexa Ability Blueprints.


The most effective options is the flexibility to arrange a collection of actions which occur in your command. So though Alexa can’t settle for a number of requests in a single go (but!), Routines is type of a workaround for this.

You would configure, for instance, that Alexa will activate the lights and browse your Flash Briefing while you say “Alexa, good morning”.

Best Echo Tips & Tricks

The previous will occur solely when you have appropriate sensible lights (see Management your stuff under). The latter is a built-in characteristic which supplies you a information and climate replace.

To customize the Flash Briefing, go to Settings > Flash Briefing.  Faucet the bins subsequent to the providers you need included, and faucet ‘Get extra Flash Briefing content material’ so as to add extra.

Best Alexa Tips & Tricks

Keep in mind that not all the providers provided are recorded audio: some use Alexa’s text-to-speech perform. Sadly, this isn’t actually adequate but in comparison with listening to a pre-recorded information bulletin. However you may change off something you don’t like simply sufficient.

Management your lights and switches

Many firms have added Alexa assist for his or her sensible residence devices, together with Wi-Fi gentle bulbs, sensible plugs, safety cameras, temperature and movement sensors, thermostats and radiator valves.

You’ll should allow the related Ability, then enter your login particulars and authorise Alexa to regulate these gadgets by means of your account.

Then it’s only a case of studying precisely what to say to regulate them, in addition to what’s doable. For instance, you may group a number of sensible bulbs and get Alexa to show them on and off on the identical time by saying “Alexa flip off the lights”.

When naming any machine, preserve it so simple as doable to make sure Alexa doesn’t miss-hear you.

Alexa tips & tricks

You probably have an Echo Present or Spot, you may view the video feed from appropriate cameras and video doorbells. Allow the Ability from the digital camera’s producer and enter your account particulars. Then say “Alexa, present me the entrance door” or use no matter identify you’ve gotten on condition that digital camera. Keep in mind, rename your digital camera if the present identify is not straightforward to say or straightforward for Alexa to grasp.


Alexa can ship messages and make voice calls to a different Alexa customers.

When you enable her to entry your telephone (or pill) contacts, she will determine who has an Echo or the Alexa app.

You may then say “Alexa, inform Marc I’ll be spherical in 15 minutes”. Your voice recording will then be performed on their Echo once they examine their messages.

Alternatively you may kind your message within the Alexa app, and she is going to then learn it out in her voice as a substitute of utilizing a recording of your voice.

For extra particulars see our information to Alexa messaging and calling.

There’s additionally the flexibility to broadcast messages on all of your Echo gadgets. Ask Alexa on any Echo and say “Alexa inform everybody dinner is prepared” and she is going to announce it round the home.

Drop-In is one other characteristic meaning you can begin a voice or video name with a trusted contact with out ready for them to first reply. It sounds slightly odd, however when used between two Echos in the identical residence, or to video name the grandparents, it is a helpful characteristic. 

Enjoyable issues to do with Alexa

Amazon has given Alexa many witty responses: you simply have to know what to ask. We’ve put collectively an inventory of 95 issues you may ask Alexa to get humorous responses. One fast instance is “Alexa, inform us a joke”.

And there’s a collection of video games you may play. So attempt saying the next:

  • Alexa, play 20 questions
  • Alexa, play rock, paper, scissors
  • Alexa, play Bingo
  • Alexa, open the Wayne Investigation
  • Alexa, open Geography Trivia
  • If you happen to’re enjoying a board sport, say “Alexa, roll the cube”.