Amazon Echo – Smart speaker with Alexa is amazing product from Amazon. It is programmed to accommodate tons of features like Calculator, Radio, Story teller, Health Advisor, Cook Advisor, List Manager, Expense Manager, Programming query helper, Music player, Bill Payer and lot more. Among the numerous features below were the ones that attracted me.

                                                         

1. Indian Railway

You don’t have to log-in into IRCTC and spend 15 minutes just to know the seat availability, now you can do this in seconds saying the magical words
Simply say “ask Indian Railways and then “seat availability, live running status, PNR status and train routes.

for example:
To ask for seat availability say – *Check for seat availability <Train number or name>

Alexa recommend using train number, this is due to Alexa’s limitations in understanding Indian names.

2. Ola/Uber

Using the Ola/Uber Cabs skill, you can now book a cab using just your voice. Get started by linking your Ola account. Get to know the fare estimate for any ride whenever you mention Work as the drop location. Just say “Alexa, Ask Ola what is the cost of a Prime to Work”.

Once your ride is booked, you can get the status of your ride by saying “Alexa, ask Ola to track my ride”. In case you change your mind, you can also say “Alexa, ask Ola to cancel my ride”.

Please note that the payment for the ride will be using your Ola/Uber Money balance. In case it is insufficient, you might be asked to pay the additional amount in cash to the driver.

3. News reader

Times of India/ CNN/ Hindustan times/ Dinamalar and lot more news channels were integrated to bring the Latest & Breaking News Headlines from India & around the World. Read Latest News Today on Sports, Business, Health & Fitness, Bollywood & Entertainment, Blogs & Opinions from leading columnists on the go and while doing other stuffs.

4. Zomato food order

Ever wished you could say “restaurant” and hear related information, or say “food” and have it sent to you? Zomato has built a skill on Alexa to give you the next best thing! With the Zomato skill, you can discover restaurants to dine out (and book a table when available) and order food online.

Simply say “Alexa, open Zomato” to get started. Search for restaurants by cuisine, and find out what other people enjoyed eating there, before taking your pick. Get food delivered from top restaurants nearest to your location – even if you need to add a new address, it’ll just take a couple of seconds.

If you haven’t linked your Zomato app to Alexa already, do it to make getting food in your tummy that much easier. Alexa will pick up all the information from your Zomato profile, to ensure a seamless experience every time.

Therefore, you can also order food online using the Zomato Skill on Alexa and pay using cash or wallet. You can use any of Paytm, Payuwallet, Mobikwik or Freecharge wallets.



5. Master Mind

Mastermind lets you send SMS text messages & emails, initiate phone calls, ring your phone, share your location, search for places, search the web, launch Google Maps navigation, access apps on your phone, get your calendar and much more. Mastermind is your cross-platform AI (artificial intelligence) that helps you get things done on any voice-enabled device (such as Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple iPhones and others).

* Send SMS text messages
* Send email
* Initiate Phone calls
* Ring your phone
* Share your location
* Search for places to eat and go
* Perform web search
* Get Caller ID (Android only)
* Read app notifications (Android only)
* Get phone battery charge
* Turn on Wifi, Bluetooth and Do-Not-Disturb (Android only)
* Launch Google Maps navigation on your phone
* Send articles from your PC to Mastermind and have Alexa read it aloud
* Cast to Chromecast TV (Android only)
* Get your Calendar and Schedule from multiple calendars
* More…

6. Listonic Smart Grocery List Maker

The Listonic skill improves the quality of your grocery shopping by making it easier, faster, and most importantly smarter. It is all you would want out of a shopping list app and more.

Plan your grocery shopping hands-free by dictating entire lists to Alexa. Listonic instantly syncs with Alexa giving you instant access to all your lists which you can then manage accordingly. What’s more, your lists can be shared with friends and family to make sure that everyone stays on top of what is needed.

Therefore this is how it works on Alexa:

First, you have to registrate a Listonic account on app.listonic.com or in our mobile app.

Then you can:
– Add a new list with “Create list Joe’s Birthday Party”
– Add items to your list: “Add apple”
– Check and uncheck items with “Check/uncheck apple on Joe’s Birthday Party”
– Let Alexa read the articles on your list with “ Read list Joe’s Birthday Party”

To do multiple things consecutively start with:
– “Alexa, open Listonic.”
After the welcome message continues with:
– “Change the default list to Joe’s Birthday Party.”
– “What is on my list?”
– “Add 2 kilograms of apples to my list.”

7. Sleep helper

We have all had those nights where it just seems impossible to get to sleep. Sleep Helper to the rescue! Sleep Helper explains and assists you in the 4-7-8 breathing exercise. Simply open the skill by saying, “Alexa, open Sleep Helper.” Once you confirm you need assistance falling asleep, Sleep helper goes to work by guiding you through the quick and simple process. Sleep Helper will help you get a peaceful restful night’s sleep in minutes.

Alexa plays soft background music, Alexa gradually whispering instructions until you fall asleep and Option for soothing ambient noise.

8. Smart Home

Though this feature cannot be used in India as we are not established much with Smart Home yet, might be in near future it would be useful to control everything from our sofas.

Connect Alexa to Syska/ Mi / Wipro/ Philips and more Smart Home products in a few simple steps:
1. Download ‘Smart Home’ app for Android or iOS.
2. Register your account in the ‘ Smart Home’ app.
3. Configure your device on the Smart Home app and name your device as it will be used in Smart Home skills. e.g. bedroom light, kitchen light, rainbow bulb, etc.
4. Once you have configured your echo with the Alexa app, search for the ‘Smart Home’ skill.
5. Click ‘Enable Skill’ of Smart Home, and you will be redirected to the Login page.
6. Input your Smart Home App username and password, and you will be redirected to the success page.
7. Setup has been completed.

Light Controls:
“Alexa, turn on bedroom light”
“Alexa, turn off bedroom light”
“Alexa, dim bedroom light”
“Alexa, brighten bedroom light”
“Alexa, set the bedroom light to 20 percent”

Color Control:
“Alexa, set bedroom light to green”
“Alexa, set bedroom light to purple”
“Alexa, set bedroom light to blue”

9. Music Player

Just ask for a song, artist, or genre from your favourite music services like Amazon Prime Music, Saavn, and TuneIn. Using multi-room music, you can even play music across multiple Echo devices at the same time.

10. Fridge Notes

Record notes for other people in your household/office. Using this the messages were delivered very easily, yet our family members should use the service at same time.

                                                         

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