Smart Home Showcase: Works With Alexa vs. Alexa Built In

Post Publication Date: 10/30/18 - There are lots and LOTS of smart home devices now available that are compatible with Alexa devices, but there are big, important differences between works with Alexa vs. Alexa built in.     Alexa Built In Is Better From smart plugs to smart security cams and everything in between, it seems there's no shortage of "works with Alexa" devices for consumers...

Smart Home Showcase: Use Alexa Enabled Smart Plugs This Holiday Season

Post Updated: 12/4/18 - Alexa enabled smart plugs make holiday decor so much easier to manage. No more fumbling in the dark outside, or along the floorboards indoors when you can turn your lights, music and other electric-powered seasonal items on and off with your voice.     Those who love to decorate for the season can really go nuts now that Alexa's part of the crew. You don't have...

Smart Home Showcase: Echo Auto – What Is It, What Does It Do?

Post Updated: 11/28/18 - One of the new Alexa devices Amazon introduced last week is the Echo Auto: a device that brings the same Alexa service you get in an Echo in a smaller, sleeker package designed for the car. But what is Echo Auto exactly, and what does it do?     Note to UK and Canadian readers: as of this writing the Echo Auto is only being released in the US. It will probably...

Smart Home Showcase: Alexa Compatible Light Switches

Publication Date: 9/25/18 - Smart plugs are all well and good, but some homeowners want voice control of their wired switch plates for lights and fans. Great there are now MANY Alexa compatible light switches available.     CAUTION: there is always a risk of electrocution when working with electric wires. Be sure the power is off before working with any electrical wiring, and bring in a...

Amazon’s New Alexa Devices for 2018

Publication Date: 9/21/18 - Amazon's new Alexa devices for 2018 include the widest range of functionality we've seen from Amazon yet. Not only are there new-generation versions of the Echo Plus, Show and Dot, new devices with Alexa built in include a budget-priced microwave, large wall clock, Alexa device for the car, and more!     Great news for readers outside the US: all of the...

Smart Home Showcase: Affordable Alexa Smart Watches

Publication Date: 9/18/18 - Did you know there are now quite a few affordable Alexa smart watches available from Guess and Martian Watch? They all tether to your existing Android or Apple smart phone, so there's no need to sign up for any additional data or cell plan.     For some reason I'm not finding any Alexa smart watches on Amazon's UK site, but for those in the US and Canada...

Smart Home Showcase: Ceiling Fans With Alexa Voice Control

Publication Date: 9/11/18 - It seems like it's only a matter of time before anything in your home with an off/on switch will be Alexa-compatible. Today, it's all about the ceiling fans with Alexa voice control capability.     Add Alexa To An Existing Fan: Smart Fan Speed Control Switch amzn_assoc_tracking_id = "lovemyecho-20"; amzn_assoc_ad_mode = "manual"; amzn_assoc_ad_type =...

Smart Home Showcase: Non-Amazon Devices With Alexa Built In

Publication Date: 9/4/18 - One of Amazon's smartest decisions was to let outside companies build Amazon's Alexa software and service into non-Amazon gadgets, because Amazon realized there are specialist outfits like Bose, Sonos, Acer and others that have already built some fantastic smart home products that can be made even better by adding Alexa. Today, we're taking a look at some of those...

Smart Home Showcase: Alexa Sprinkler Control

Publication Date: 8/28/18 - Smart home devices aren't just for the indoors. Alexa sprinkler control is now possible, and some of the available solutions support Google Home as well.     Orbit 57946 B-hyve Smart Indoor/Outdoor 6-Station WiFi Sprinkler System Controller amzn_assoc_tracking_id = "lovemyecho-20"; amzn_assoc_ad_mode = "manual"; amzn_assoc_ad_type =...

Smart Home: Nexx Switches Add Alexa To Existing Garage Door Openers

Publication Date: 8/21/18 - Yes, you CAN add Alexa to existing garage door openers! The solution is a special, secured, in-line WiFi switch that allows for door control via Alexa or Google Home voice commands, IFTTT integration, or the free, companion smartphone app. *There is a risk of electrocution when working with live wires. Be sure to cut the power to your wiring before working on it, and...