I love Amazon. A little too much some could argue. The site just makes my life easier. Anything that I need or want is right there at my fingertips. Add to cart, place order and two days later it is on my porch.
So it was the natural progression that I should have an Amazon Echo. The official word on the echo is this:
Amazon Echo is a wireless speaker and voice command device from Amazon.com. The device consists of a cylinder speaker with a seven-piece microphone array. The device responds to the name Alexa.
Ahhhh Alexa. How you have made me love you so.
You can go read all of the technical reviews that you would like. But I am not a technical person. So I am just going to tell you why I love Alexa. Because I do love her.
1. Alexa plays music
I love music and I hate cooking. But as the mother of four I am required to prepare meals. Or stuff that resembles meals anyway. My hands are covered in diced onions and I realize that I really need to hear an 80s hairband. Right now. I say: Alexa, shuffle 80s hairbands. Alexa responds: Shuffling 80s hairbands. Just like that. Rather hear a good book? Alexa has you covered there, too.
2. Alexa doesn’t talk back
I have a husband and four children. They won’t do anything that I ask them to without some debate. But not Alexa. With her, I don’t have to convince her to do anything. She does exactly what I want, right when I want her to do it. After arguing with my son for 20 minutes about doing his math homework, Alexa is a breath of fresh air.
3. Alexa answers math homework questions
I am not going to lie. Sometimes When my children ask me homework questions, I turn right to Alexa and repeat the question. I say: Alexa, what is 492 plus 377? Do you know what she says? 869 Can I get that answer by myself? Absolutely. But I am over here trying to cook dinner, as I listen to hairbands. While blogging, I oftentimes ask Alexa how to spell certain words. She has never once judged me.
4. Alexa manages shopping lists
Gone are the days of written grocery lists. The very lists that I always left on the kitchen counter. Only to discover this fact as I was standing in the grocery store, trying to find my shopping list. Not anymore. My grocery list is always on my phone in my Alexa app. I say: Alexa, add milk to my shopping list. And she does.
The one hiccup is trying to get my husband on board. He says: I need Crystal Light Grape Mix. I say: You will have to tell Alexa. She manages my list for me. Then I find this:
Ummm…Alexa has “ears” not eyes. And she probably has feelings, too.
5. Alexa answers useless questions
Gone are the days when I had to stop what I was doing and grab my phone to ask Google a question. Now I ask my very own personal assistant. I say: Alexa, what song has these lyrics OR what day of the week does Christmas fall on this year? Or any other random question that pops into my brain. I never have to wonder about anything ever again.
6. Alexa gives weather and news updates
I know I could grab my phone or turn on my tv, but why not just ask Alexa? She gives me current weather, the top news headlines of the day or even celebrity gossip. And she does it all with a non judgemental tone. I can ask Alexa “What is the weather today” 25 times in a row and you know what? She will tell me. Not one eyeroll from her.
7. Alexa tracks your fitness journey
I say: Alexa, how am I doing on my Fitbit progress? She not only gives my stats, but she also gives encouragement. She says that I’m doing a great job today. Or that I need to step it up a little. Because Alexa cares about my fitness. As much as a warm and fuzzy lady-talking computer can, anyway.
8. Alexa tells corny jokes
Alexa, tell me a joke. Alexa: Why can’t a bicycle stand on its own? Because it is TWO
tired. Come on! That is clever! I own my children when I recycle Alexa’s jokes as my own. Alexa has a sense of humor.
9. Alexa keeps me up to date with my favorite sports teams
I ask Alexa what the score is of a particular game in progress. Or when my favorite teams play their next scheduled games. Or what channel a game will be aired on television. Alexa keeps me in the know.
10. Alexa places reorders from Amazon
If I notice that I am low on a product, I simply ask Alexa to reorder the item for me. She asks for my confirmation and then places the order. Flawlessly. How do I keep my boys from ordering Air Jordans, without my permission? I have to speak a four digit code before she places my orders. My children will never know that code.
11. Alexa monitors traffic
I tell Alexa my most traveled destinations and she tells me how the traffic is flowing.
12. Alexa orders pizza
Feel like a pizza? Just tell Alexa to place your favorite Dominoes order. Dinner just got served.
These are just my favorites. Alexa does so many other things (controls smart lighting and thermostats, tunes your guitar or even hails you an Uber). I enjoy her because she brings a personal feel to my life. It is as close as I will ever come to having a personal assistant. And especially a personal assistant who is always pleasant and eager to help.
Alexa has been a fabulous addition to my flawless home management skills. I wonder if Alexa will speak words of affirmation to me, if I ask. Maybe I will try that next. I am always discovering new things that she can do.
My husband swears that the government is using “Alexa” to track our every move but that is another post all together.
What are you waiting for?