This story is part of the with tips on the best ways to manage your vacation.
You got youror on Black Friday, Cyber Monday or maybe a really good sale, and now it's time to set it. Easy enough, if you don't realize everything you can do with your smart speaker.
Did you know, for example, that Alexa can recognize your voice, along with someone else in your house, as long as you have set voice recognition? And that Alexa can let you know what's on your plate for the day if you set your calendar?
Alexa won't tell you everything you need to do to get your new Echo unit running to its full potential, so that's where we come in. Read on for the step-by-step process to get your smart speaker configured and how it can benefit you the most.
Download the Alexa app on your phone
Before you even connect your new Echo device to the wall, make sure you download the Alexa app to your Android phone or iPhone – otherwise it is your speaker useless. Once downloaded, you can connect the speaker to the wall with the charger that came in the box.
Add your new Echo device to the Alexa app
You must add the device to the Alexa app to start using it. Open the app on your phone, select Devices and press the plus sign in the upper right corner. Select Add Device > Amazon Echo > and select the name of the device you are using.
Connect your Echo to Wi-Fi
Then connect your new Echo to Wi-Fi. Choose your home or office Wi-Fi network. When connected to Wi-Fi, your Echo will say "your Echo is ready." Touch Continue in the Alexa app to move on to the next step.
Set the unit location – do not skip this
You need to decide which room you want to hold your Echo in. A great place is in the kitchen or living room because there are common places in the house to hang out ( and where other smart home devices may be located).
Then you have to add the place Amazon Echo will live (like your home address or zip code). This is great for when you ask Alexa how the weather is, so it can give you an accurate description. You can always return to your settings later and change this by going to Devices > name of speaker> Device Location .
Link your email and calendar
Amazon's Alexa Assistant can remind you of upcoming events and help you manage your schedule, but you must connect your email account through the Alexa app. Navigate to Settings > Calendar & Email > and select from Google, Microsoft, Apple and Microsoft Exchange.
If you just want to connect your calendar, you can turn off the email setting on the next page and then press Next . Enter your email address and follow the on-screen instructions.
Set up your Flash Briefing
Just like your news preference on TV, your Amazon Echo can play news only from the sources you choose. You must go to Settings > Flash Briefing > and select where you want to hear the news. Your options include NPR, CNN, Fox News and more.
When you're ready to listen to what's happening in the world, just say "Alexa, play my Flash Briefing" or "Alexa, what's in the news?"
Set up your favorite music streaming service
Once your Amazon Echo is configured, you can start listening to music from Amazon Music. However, if you prefer to listen to Spotify, Pandora, Apple Music, iHeartRadio or another streaming service, you must link the service.
Go to Settings > Music & Podcasts > and link to a service. To change the default settings, select Standard Services and switch to your preferred music provider. When you say "Alexa, play music", Echo will play from the music streaming service you selected.
If your favorite music service is not supported by Alexa (like YouTube music), you can still play your favorite songs with your speakers. All you have to do is pair your phone, tablet or computer with Bluetooth. To do this, say "Alexa, couple." Then open the Bluetooth settings on your phone or tablet, locate the Alexa speaker on the device and select it to pair.
When paired, when you want to connect your device to Alexa, just say "Alexa, connect." Then you can play any audio through your Alexa speaker.
Let Alexa learn your voice
When Alexa gets to know you a little better, it will give you more personal answers. You must set up a voice profile so Alexa can distinguish you from other users in the house. To get Alexa to learn your voice, open the Alexa app on your phone and go to Settings > Account Settings > Recognized Voices > Create a voice profile and follow the on-screen instructions and read four phrases aloud.
Then you can say "Alexa, who am I?" and it will tell who is talking. You can add all members of your household so that they also have a personal experience.
Enable follow-up mode
If you give Alexa multiple commands at once, it will just say "Hmm, I don't know." But if you enable follow-up mode, you can ask questions back to back without saying "Alexa" each time. To activate, just say "Alexa, enable follow-up mode."
Turn on voice buying
When your hands are too busy to open your phone and chase something you need to buy on Amazon, you can just ask Alexa to do it. For example, if you find that you run out of paper towel or hand soap, you can ask Alexa to order it for you. However, you need to activate voice ordering and ordering with 1 click.
To do so, open the Alexa app> Settings > Account settings > Voice purchase and switch the setting Buy with voice on. On the same screen, you can create a voice tag so that only you can make Amazon purchases with your Echo.
Periodically updated with new information.