7 ways an Alexa-powered smart home can work for the whole family
Family life can be busy and complicated. Parents these days juggle hundreds of things at once, including family activities, dates, and pet care.
Technology sometimes has a bad reputation. Video games and smartphones are accused of alienating family members. Your smart home products can really help bring your family together.
We are going to show you how a smart home virtual assistant can link and manage these products in a smart and harmonious home.
1. Smart cameras work like great baby monitors
A smart camera can offer more functionality and versatility than a traditional baby monitor. Place the Wi-Fi camera in the nursery and plug it in. Many products include a magnetic disk to mount the camera on the wall. You can point the camera lens down into the crib and have a clear view of baby above the cradle slats.
Traditional baby monitors have limited viewing options. They usually only include a single device with a screen or, in some cases, a speaker to listen to a baby. In a smart home, you can see and hear your baby in a number of convenient ways.
For example, Amazon’s Echo Show has a built-in screen where you can view the feed from your baby monitor. You can also view the feed on tablets, computers, and TVs. You can say things like “Alexa, show baby’s room on living room TV”.
You can also view the feed on your smartphone with your camera app. Many smart cameras have motion detection features that can alert you when the baby starts to wake up from their nap.
2. Streaming music isn’t just for teens
Now that your baby is napping and you are watching him with the smart camera, it’s time to put on some lullaby music. In today’s smart home, you can play just about any kind of music anytime you want, in any room.
With an Amazon Echo Dot in your bedroom, you can say “Alexa, play lullaby music in the bedroom.” You can also develop playlists for your baby’s lullaby. When you hear a song that baby will love, you can say “Alexa, add this song to baby’s playlist.”
Some smart devices are designed for children’s rooms and include additional safety enhancements.
Music streaming is great for the whole family. What kind of music do you and your family prefer, playing is just a request from Alexa. Try saying “Alexa, play some good jazz”. Or maybe “Alexa, play some of the latest alternate hits”.
If you don’t like the music available on Amazon, you can choose from several streaming services including options like Apple Music, Spotify and many more,
3. Smart home games and activities for the whole family
Amazon’s Echo devices and similar smart home devices offer a range of fun games that the whole family can play.
Alexa is providing a Jeopardy spin-off from the popular game show, “animated” by the voice of the late Alex Trebek. Just say “Alexa, play Jeopardy”. There are several entertainment options, including trivia and games. Say “Alexa, what are some good family games?” ”
Some fun games you could try include:
4. Smart calendars help you remember all your family appointments
All sports practices, doctor’s appointments, music recitals, birthdays and other events are difficult for parents to remember without a reminder. Your smart home virtual assistant can help. You can create a calendar that all family members can see.
Alexa includes a built-in calendar. You can say things like “Alexa, add a dance recital to the calendar on Monday”.
Alexa will ask what time the event should be on the calendar that day. Once you’ve entered your busy schedule, Alexa can remind you of upcoming events. You may never forget to take your child to soccer practice again.
You can also set alarms and timers. Say “Alexa, set an alarm for eight in the morning.” Alexa will ask you if you want this alarm to go off every day of the week.
Your virtual assistant can provide useful timers. For example, maybe you have a baked pizza for the kids. You can say “Alexa, set a timer for 12 minutes.” Alexa is tied to different types of calendars, including Google and Apple.
5. Smart ways to keep your pet healthy
Are you worried that your dog has eaten a glove? Amazon Alexa offers medical advice with virtual home veterinary services. MyPetDoc provides health advice for your pet and Just Answer Dog Help provides information specifically for dog owners. Alexa will ask you questions about your pet and offer tips and advice. If your concern warrants professional care or medication, Alexa can help connect you with local vets.
Here are some examples of things you can discuss with these skills:
my cat is throwing up
My dog is itchy and scratching
My cat urinates out of his litter box
My dog’s eye is red
6. Entertain the whole family
The family can only play a limited number of Jeopardys, right? Chances are, at least one member of your family enjoys a good movie or cartoon. Alexa provides great suggestions on what to watch. Alexa can link your smart TV to Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, HBO Max, Hulu, etc.
Alexa can help you control not only what you watch, but where you watch it as well. For example, you could say “Alexa, open Hulu on the basement TV”.
Parental controls can help make sure your kids aren’t watching something you think is inappropriate.
7. Bring smart technology to the front door
Doorbell cameras help you see the front door when someone is ringing. Technology can also provide useful knowledge and peace of mind. Have your children returned from school? They don’t always remember to text you.
A doorbell camera can alert you when there is movement at your front door, such as when your children are arriving. If you don’t feel like setting up motion detection, watch your camera’s live view when it’s time for it to come home.
A smart home can help bring your family together
Today’s smart products are there for every member of the family, from mom and dad to kids and even pets. There are lots of fun and easy to use games, cameras, apps, TV shows, music services, and utilities.
Technology meets your needs and blends into the background, helping you focus on what’s important – your family.
Immerse yourself in hands-free audio, voice commands and smart home features with an Alexa speaker.
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