“Hey Jarvis, turn on the Mark XXIV Armor.”
“Hey Jarvis, locate Spiderman and Thor.”
That’s Iron Man giving commands to his AI butler as he maneuvers his flying armor through an army of evil aliens. It’s the dream of every futurist, an AI butler. While none of us are quite Tony Stark, “Genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist.” Amazon has made it possible for us to have our very own AI butler with the Amazon Echo.
Here are 11 Amazon Echo hacks that can make you 11x cooler.
1. “Uhh Alexa, Where’s My Car?”
Was it on 49th street or 39th street? No, it was Main Street. We’ve all been there. Forgot where you parked? Alexa can help you locate your car.
Alexa can also keep track of your gas and how much you’ve driven. It can even turn on your house lights when you park your car.
All you need is an Automatic adapter and sync it up with your Echo.
2. Do Your Finances
How much did you spend on Starbucks last week? Did you really buy 90 bucks worth of donuts?
Alexa can keep track of your finances if you have a Capital One Account.
You can check balances on your cards and bank accounts, read statements, and even pay your bills.
Okay, We’re a bit skeptical about this one, since anyone in your home can do this. You don’t want your roommates to find out how much you spent on Frappucinos last week, do you?
Let’s see what other Amazon Echo hacks we have in store for you.
3. “Say My Name, Say My Name… When No One Is Around You”
Okay, you can’t quite summon Beyonce with this hack (Although, you can play her music). However, you can change Alexa’s name to Echo, Computer, or Amazon. Amazon programmed in those 3 additional “wake words.”
What’s the point of this?
If you make a new friend named Alexa or name your new dog Alexa, it might be prudent to change Alexa’s name to Echo, Computer, or Amazon to avoid confusion (Unless you name your dog Amazon, in that case, stick with Alexa or Echo).
Alexa the AI won’t be playing fetch anytime soon.
To change your AI’s name, go to the App and then to Settings>Wake Word.
4. Game of Homes
While the Echo can’t quite play fetch, it does loads of other fun stuff. If you are bored, here are some games you can play with Alexa.
Feeling like 20 questions? Just say “Alexa, open Akinator,” to start a game of it. She’ll ask you a bunch of yes or no questions and guess the character you’re thinking of.
20 questions not your thing? What about some roleplay with your favorite AI? No, not that kind of roleplay. Ask Alexa to “Open The Wayne Investigation” to become the world’s greatest detective and find out who killed Bruce Wayne’s parents.
If you’re not satisfied with role playing as Batman. Amazon built other games into the Echo such as Memory Match or BlackJack you can play.
Want to play board games but missing the dice? Ask the Echo to roll dice for you. You can even specify the number of dice you want to throw out. All you have to say is “Alexa, roll two dice,” or “three dice” and so on…
5. IFTTT: If This, Then That For The Amazon Echo
Want to shut down your house during night time?
Bought new party lights and want to have a disco party?
You can set up new commands at IFTTT.
The Echo can do a whole host of cool stuff ranging from nonsensical to super practical. Although, we personally think turning on the party light is totally on the super practical side of the spectrum.
If you’re a forgetful person, you can ask Alexa to email you your to-do list or send you a phone notification when your cooking timer goes off. No one likes burnt pot roast.
Love discovering music? Alexa’s got your back, she can put all the songs you listened to on a Google spreadsheet.
This is essentially training your Echo to do whatever you want.
Tread carefully though, this hack will have you drunk with power. With great power comes great… voice activated lava lamps.
6. Tony Stark Your House
Remember that scene in Iron Man where the news reporter wakes up to Jarvis’s voice and the lights turn on and the windows open. You can do this with the Echo. All you need are smart plug-ins.
Don’t feel like walking across the room to turn on your lamp? The Echo can do it for you. Alexa can turn on your TV and open up your window shade as long as they’re connected to a smart plug-in.
Or if you have smart appliances, you can add skills to Alexa and connect directly to the appliance.
The Amazon Echo hacks your house, literally.
7. Buy Stuff From Amazon
Okay, Amazon might’ve put this in for their own self-interest but you can’t deny the convenience. Those evil geniuses got you buying their stuff while you’re sitting on the toilet.
Let’s say you’re grilling a steak and you’re running low on Sriracha. You can’t hold off on buying Sriracha, you might forget later! But your hands are dirty from cooking steak with Sriracha, you don’t want to touch your computer with those germy fingers.
No worries, Alexa has your back. Ask her to restock your Sriracha and it will be there in a couple of business days.
Although I can’t say this feature is that helpful if you run out of toilet paper while you’re on the john!
Future Amazon Echo hacks, “Hey Alexa, beam me up some toilet paper and Sriracha!”
8. Go Commando Daily
Okay, this is probably the most basic of all the Amazon Echo hacks. It’s a list of standard commands, but you’ll be using it daily, might as well learn them!
“Alexa, set volume to 4.” Range 1-10
“Alexa, shut the f– up.” We’re not kidding about this last one, she will understand you and immediately proceed to shut the f– up.
If you want to set time alarms you can say:
“Alexa, set alarm for 10:00 AM.”
“Alexa, set timer for 20 minutes.”
or our favorite,
Here are some commands for music lovers:
“Alexa, play artist U2”
“Alexa, play latest Beyonce Album”
“Alexa, play that song that says…….” will help you find that catchy song you don’t know the name of.
For sports fans:
“Alexa, when does the (team name) next play?”
“Alexa, what was the score of the (team name) game?”
“Alexa, did the Knicks win?” Probably not!
9. The Lists Go On and On….
Amazon Echo hacks your to-do and shopping lists. You can set up to-do lists by saying, “Alexa, create a to-do list.”
You can set up to-do lists by saying, “Alexa, create a to-do list.”
then add things to it by saying,
“Alexa, add ‘shave my baby’s head’ to my to-do list,” to add shaving your infant’s cranium to your list. Good luck explaining that to your spouse!
You can also do the same with a shopping list and just add stuff to it by saying,
“Alexa, add cucumber to my shopping list.”
Lastly, she can recite your to-do or shopping list if you say, “What’s on my (shopping or to-do) list?” She will tell you that you need to shave your baby or buy a cucumber, respectively.
10. Amazon Echo Hacks Your Car Service And Pizza
Getting ready for a night out? Don’t have a ride and need one ready by the time you’re done changing? The Echo can do it for you. Car service providers like Uber built a voice command function into their apps.
You can access their service by saying,
“Alexa, ask Uber ‘to request Uber X’.”
However, each company has their own statements programmed in, so you will have to know what that statement is in order to access them through the Amazon Echo.
For example, if you want pizza. You have to say,
“Alexa, open up Domino’s and place my easy order.”
11. Who Needs A Personal Assistant?
Hook the Echo up with your Google Calendar and you can ask her what you have coming up.
There are multiple ways you can do this:
“Hey Alexa, what’s on my calendar for this Monday?”
“Hey Alexa, what’s my next event?”
She’ll give you the run-down on your obligations.
If you want to know about how sucky traffic is for your daily commute. You can add your work address in Settings>Accounts>Traffic.
Then ask her, “Alexa, how’s my commute?”
And she’ll tell you about all the red line routes in Google Maps. Now if only she can clear traffic….
Conclusion: You’re Still Not Iron Man But You Can Get Pretty Close With These 11 Amazon Echo Hacks
We’re a long way off from commanding our own Iron Man suit or battling villainous Norse-godlike aliens (Hopefully, the latter will never happen), but hacking your daily activities with your voice is pretty darn awesome.
It was only a decade ago when an automated home meant having a clapper turn your lights on and off. Think about the possibilities in the next coming decade, as more technology becomes connected to the internet.
Imagine summoning your car with a single sentence or even asking your car to self-park. Order your land mower to trim the lawn and your garbage to throw itself out. Okay, that last one is a bit of a stretch unless someone out there is creating “smart” garbage bags. We’re looking at you, Jeff Bezos. The possibilities are limitless.
What do you think about our 11 Amazon Echo hacks? Which of the Amazon Echo hacks is your favorite? Are there any cool hacks we missed? Shoot us your thoughts below!
Bonus hack for math geeks: You can ask Alexa to recite Pi up to the 100th place.