If you have any Amazon Alexa-connected devices, you already know how helpful they can be. You might even have a few around the house, including in your family room, kitchen and your home office.
The voice-activated assistant connects to the internet and is a great resource to have. It can be used to control smart appliances, listen to music, learn about your commute to work and so much more.
Those are just a few of the fun and helpful ways Alexa can help you save time and stay entertained. But can Alexa help with more serious tasks, like in an emergency situation? The answer is yes, it now has a skill that could actually come to the rescue.
That's why you need to know how to get Alexa to call 911. Keep reading to learn how it might just save your life one day.
How to use this life-saving technology
To take advantage of Alexa's life-saving technology, you will need a few items that you probably already have and one new one. Let's begin with the items you might have already.
Obviously, you're going to need an Alexa-connected device. All of the following will work: Echo (1st and 2nd generation), Echo Dot (1st and 2nd generation), Echo Show, Echo Spot, and Echo Plus.
(Note: You can pick up one of these items by clicking the links below.)
Next, you will need home phone service. You can either use an existing landline or VoIP service.
VoIP stands for Voice Over Internet Protocol. Basically, it means that you can make phone calls over the internet, without a landline.
Finally, you need a smartphone for set up. You will need a smartphone with iOS 9.0 or higher, or Android 5.0 or higher. Then simply download the Alexa App on your smartphone and set up Alexa Calling and Messaging by verifying your mobile phone number.
Those are the items that you might already have. Now, let's talk about the new gadget that you will need to use Alexa to call emergency services.
Phone calls through Alexa made easy
Amazon has a gadget called Echo Connect. With it, you can use your compatible Echo device to call any number supported by your home phone service provider. Including 911.
Once you have Echo Connect, you can sync the contacts from your smartphone in the Alexa App so you never have to look up a number. Simply say "Alexa call 911," and it will call emergency services for you.
Setting up your Echo Connect is easy. Before you get started with Echo Connect:
- Use your smartphone to sign up for Alexa Calling and Messaging.
- Make sure your phone or VoIP service setup is complete.
- Place Echo Connect in a location that is close to a power outlet, phone jack, and your Wi-Fi router. It doesn't need to be near your existing handsets or Echo devices.
Once you're finished with those steps, set up your Echo Connect with these steps:
- Turn on Echo Connect - Plug the included power adapter into Echo Connect, and then into a power outlet. The power LED light on the top of the device is solid when the device has power.
- Connect to a phone jack - Plug one end of the included telephone cable into the back of the Echo Connect. Plug the other end of the cable into:
- A standard telephone jack (for landline phone service)
- A Wi-Fi router (for digital phone service)
- Analogue Telephone Adapter (for VoIP phone service)
- Complete Wi-Fi setup in the Alexa app on your smartphone - From the Alexa app menu, select Settings >> Set up a new device and follow the instructions.
That's it, that's all you need to do to have Alexa make hands-free calls for you. It's not just a great tool for emergency situations. It's also helpful making regular calls to friends and family.
Because Echo Connect uses your home phone number, family and friends will be able to recognize the call. You can even answer your home phone on your Echo from across the room, so you can easily talk to anyone hands-free when you're busy or away from the phone.
You can buy an Echo Connect from Amazon for under $35. It's the perfect addition to your home. Order yours today while you're thinking about it by simply clicking the link below, you'll be glad that you did.
Speaking of internet-connected gadgets, here are 5 reasons even smart TV users should own a streaming box
There are so many streaming services available these days it's difficult to justify paying nearly $200 per month for cable. These services offer a less expensive way to watch TV that could help you save hundreds of dollars over the course of a year. However, if you're only streaming with smart TV apps you're really missing out on some truly amazing features.