Post Updated 8/2/18 – Amazon is doing a great job of filling in the gaps in Alexa functionality to deliver features users have been wanting from the beginning. Just last week I shared the news that Alexa wake to music is now available, and now the news is out that Alexa repeating reminders are here—for both the US and UK!
Finally, you can set repeating reminders for things like taking vitamins, turning sprinklers on and off, letting pets in or out, and similar types of recurring, daily tasks. Per Amazon’s US Using Reminders with Alexa page, here are some of the supported commands:
You can set one or more reminders using your voice with Alexa.
To set a reminder, say “Remind me to [task / action].”* After the reminder is set, you can use Alexa to review or cancel the reminder. When it is time for the reminder to play, Alexa will tell you what you wanted to remember.
*LME Editor’s note: after asking Alexa to, “Remind me to [task / action],” Alexa will prompt you for the time. You can also provide the time in your request by asking Alexa to, “Remind me to [task / action] at [time] [am / pm].” Provide both the time and day by asking Alexa to, “Remind me to [task / action] at [time] [am / pm] on [day of the week or month].”
You can also choose how often a reminder is repeated by saying, “Remind me to [task/action] on every Monday at 7 a.m.” (emphasis added by LME)
You can use the Alexa app to manage your existing reminders, or to create new ones:
– Go to the menu and select Reminders & Alarms.
– Select your device from the drop-down menu.
– Open the Reminders tab to view the status of your reminders:
– To create a new reminder, select + Add Reminder.
– To manage a reminder, select the reminder and then select Mark as Completed or Edit Reminder.
– To see your completed reminders, select View Completed.
Important Note: As of this writing, Alexa reminders play an alert tone, then have Alexa speak the reminder you’ve entered, repeat once, then turn off. If you’re not near the device when the reminder sounds you won’t hear it, though it will be sent (silently) to History in the Alexa app. On an Echo Show (and probably Spot, but I don’t have one yet so I can’t verify this), the reminder text also shows on screen and appears to remain there until it is dismissed.
Because of the requirement to be near the device when the reminder is delivered, I would recommend against relying on this feature for reminders pertaining to medication or other important health-related tasks where missing the reminder could put someone’s health at risk. If the user has a Show the on screen reminder makes it less likely a reminder will be missed, but it’s still not safe to assume the user will see the screen.
Click here to view the Using Reminders with Alexa page on Amazon’s US site.
Click here to view the Using Reminders with Alexa help page on Amazon’s UK site.