The products and services mentioned below were selected independent of sales and advertising. However, Don't Waste Your Money may receive a small commission from the purchase of any products or services through an affiliate link to the retailer's website.
Amazon’s Echo is red hot these days.
And while it’s fun to ask Alexa—the virtual assistant that powers your device—for weather updates and music, the Echo can really do a lot more that most people realize.
Reviewed.com, in a new report, says the Echo can make your life a lot easier, if you buy some accessories.
Amazon Echo Uses
You can voice control your DIY alarm system from Alarm.com.
Speaking of home security, you may also want to look for Echo compatible smart locks, that will unlock doors when they recognize the voice of a member of your family (or lock them out if you program it that way).
And yes, the Roomba vacuum is now Echo compatible, so you can now kick back on the couch, and tell your vacuum to get to work.
You can control what you are watching on TV with Alexa too if you have the Amazon Fire Stick.
What if it stops working?
What happens if your Echo turns into HAL, the rogue computer from “2001: A Space Odyssey” suddenly?
No one is reporting Alexa running amok like HAL yet.
But the website Joy of Android is hearing reports of microphone and speaker failures with some units. It says make sure you hold on to your Echo receipt for the first year of ownership.
However, Joy of Android says simply turning your Echo on and off often fixes the speaker problems.
If that still doesn’t work, the report says you can Bluetooth your Echo to an external speaker, and it will then work fine.
Look for even more uses for Echo and similar devices in the coming months, as more home items become compatible with it.
“Don’t Waste Your Money” is a registered trademark of Scripps Media, Inc. (“Scripps”).