Are you getting the most out of your Amazon Echo?
Amazon’s Alexa service has the most skills to enable and have fun with, but that doesn’t mean it is easy to find the good ones. There are a lot of duplicate skills from multiple developers all claiming to offer the same basic features, which makes finding the truly great skills difficult. It’s the kind of think you’d need to spend way too many hours talking to Alexa all by yourself to find out, which is why we did all of the chatting for you. Alone. With no one around but Alexa. Alone.
Anyway, what we have here is a collection of hidden gems we’ve unearthed in the Alexa Skill store. These aren’t the most popular skills you’ll find, but they’re unique and you’ll probably find at least one worth enabling for yourself.
Find your missing phone
While your phone has its own “Find My Phone” service, it’s nowhere near as easy to enable as just using your voice. Being able to call out to Alexa for help when you were supposed to leave ten minutes ago and just need to find your phone is a real lifesaver, and it’s the kind of thing you’ll be able to enable and forget about until it’s important. Give it a try!
Tune your instrument
Who needs an actual pitch pipe when you have Alexa around? Tune your instrument by calling out the individual notes you want to tune to, and never worry about needing to carry around extra hardware.
Store your Wi-Fi password
You went through the trouble of creating a password-protected network you’re alright with letting friends and family use, but having to stop what you are doing to enter that password in for them every time is a hassle. This skill lets you store your Wi-Fi password so your friends can just ask Alexa when they need it.
It’s probably not a good idea to use this skill on a Wi-Fi network with important things, but if you have a guest network in your home and you want to make things a little easier on yourself this is a nice feature to have.
Air quality in your area
Not everyone thinks about the quality of the air until it’s too late. This skill will get you in the habit of checking to see if it’s going to be so humid out you feel like you’re breathing water, or so dangerously dry that you should make extra sure that bottle of water is full before heading out. Either way, make sure you’re covered with this skill.
Headlines from way back in time
A nice way to start the day is peering back in time and seeing how things were before you were even born. Time Machine picks a random year from 1851 onward and reads you headlines from that same day. It’s a fun add-on for history fans, and a great way to get kids interested in learning over breakfast.
Play a game
Easily the most undersold feature to Alexa is the ability to play games. Alexa becomes the storyteller, the dungeon master, whatever you want to call it, and walks you through interactive stories that require your participation to complete. There are quite a few of these games out there, some of which have been designed around hit movies and shows to give you some additional insight before you watch. Here are some of my favorites, enjoy!