Things That Can’t Be Done with an Amazon Echo device

I ordered a buttload of toilet paper this week using my Amazon Echo (there is a special until September 9 – “Alexa, order quilted Northern toilet paper”,) but, and I know this seems crazy: There are things that can’t be done with an Amazon Echo device.

Stop cursing me. Don’t kill the messenger. I’m just telling it like it is, people!

My biggest disappointment is that, since they operate independently from one another, synchronizing music throughout the house with multiple devices doesn’t work. The Amazon Echo, Amazon Dot & Amazon Tap go independently to “the cloud” for their content. So, it’s not like a “dummy” bluetooth speaker with an external controller.

I learned this when I purchased an Amazon Dot and was severely disappointed. Sure, a fine problem to have but COME ON!!!

There are other equally first-world problems that you might encounter with a second Echo device.

If you have a home (or apartment?) with enough space and you have enough money or want to abuse your credit, you can have up to a dozen Echo devices hooked in to your Amazon account. That’s 12.

The first thing I did was to switch the Amazon Dot’s trigger word to Echo instead of Alexa. We don’t have a 12 room mansion, so if I was in the living room and said “Alexa, play King’s X Gretchen Goes To Nebraska” the Amazon Echo in the bedroom would “overhear” and it was MADNESS!!!

Go to your settings for the specific device in your app. You have the option to change the wake word to “Alexa”, “Amazon” or “Echo.”

I tried to get them to trigger each other in an endless loop. “Echo: Simon says ‘Alexa Simon says Echo simon says Alexa simon says'” That would’ve been great. Ah well.

Speaking of settings. When you set up your 2nd device, most of the settings from the 1st device will transfer. Flash briefings, Google calendar, music, skills, profiles, any smart home devices, etc. It’s a nice feature that Amazon has rained down upon their loyal citizens! Your To-Do lists and Shopping lists ARE synchronized, between devices. So a servant in one of your many rooms can get your to-do list and get your chauffeur to take him around to do your bidding.

The great thing about those lists is that they’re also viewable on the web as well.

Timers, however, do NOT work over multiple devices. You need to set those individually. This makes sense. In our imaginary 12 room mansion, we don’t want everyone waking up at 6 am to check their portfolios. Some of us may want to sleep in, right? Right.

Having a bunch of Echo devices, while ultimately unnecessary, is a cool thing and Amazon has made things intuitive and simple.

All we want in this house, however, is to be able to play the same music on multiple devices.

Is that too much to ask? Really?!?


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