The Amazon Alexa is one of the best smart home devices that you can purchase. One of the coolest features that Alexa offers has to do with the different skills and routines that you can create for your Alexa.
Making use of these skills and routines allows you to engage with all kinds of fun and useful activities in a convenient and enjoyable manner. By reading through this quick guide, you will learn all about the best skills and routines that you can use to improve your life!
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What Is An Alexa Skill?
Right before we can dive into the routines that Alexa offers, we need to talk about the skills that Alexa offers.
Every skill that you can install on your Alexa is akin to a single program. Each skill is meant to perform a certain function – accessing the weather, for example – and by downloading a particular skill, you are able to perform that function by commanding Alexa to do so.
Without the necessary skill, your Alexa device will be unable to perform that function, since Alexa won’t have the program that’s necessary to perform that particular function.
Most of the Alexa skills that you can use are available for free. Some of them, however, are not, and these skills are usually more elaborate and advanced than the Alexa skills that are free.
You can also find plenty of Alexa skills that are free to use but, rather than requiring a flat fee for the more advanced features, require a monthly subscription.
Every Alexa skill can be found online. Most of them can be found on the Alexa Store, which has a large repository of different Alexa skills and applications.
But, there are plenty of Alexa skills that can’t be found on that store but, rather, can be found on the Amazon development database. These skills are more difficult to install, however, and if you aren’t technically inclined, they usually aren’t worth installing.
What Is An Alexa Routine?
Alexa offers skills, as well as routines. Routines are, essentially, a series of functions that are performed when activated, and each one of these functions consists of a different skill, or set of skills.
Due to the sheer variety of skills that are available for Alexa, there are a tremendous number of possibilities when it comes to the different types of routines that you can create and engage with.
A routine can be activated in several ways. You can set a routine to activate when you speak a certain phrase. For something even more automatic, you can set an Alexa routine to begin when motion is detected in a certain area, but this only works if you are using a motion sensor that’s compatible with Alexa.
You can set a particular routine to begin at a certain time of the day. Finally, you can set a routine to begin based on your location, and this location will be tracked using the GPS in your smartphone.
Automate Alexa when at home
- Turn on the lights
- Set the thermostat to your ideal temperature
- Pick your favorite music or play list
- Let Alexa say “Welcome home!”
How Can You Create An Alexa Routine?
Creating a routine for Alexa is incredibly easy. But, before you begin the process, it helps to know what, exactly, your Alexa routine will consist of and, in turn, what you will do to trigger that routine. But, if you don’t know what those will be, just yet, that’s okay, since you can figure it out as you’re creating the routine.
For you to create a routine for Alexa, you will need to download the Alexa app for your smartphone. Right after you do so – assuming you’ve already connected the app to your Alexa device – you can select the menu icon that’s near the top-right of the app’s interface.
Upon doing so, you can then select “Routines” and the “+” symbol. Doing so will lead you to a menu where you can begin creating the routine that you would like to create.
To create your routine, there are several steps that you must go through. The first of these steps is naming your routine. Make sure to give it a name that’s memorable. This is especially important if you have plenty of different routines and don’t want to be confused and uncertain as to which routine consists of certain skills.
Right after you give your new routine a name, you will need to define the routine’s trigger. As mentioned in the last section, there are several triggers that you can use. Try to figure out which trigger would be the best for you and, in turn, the routine that you’ve created.
After those two steps have been completed, it’s time for you to choose the different skills and functions that you would like to be utilized and performed within your new routine.
This step will, more likely than not, take longer than any other step. But, it is the most important step and, as such, you should take your time and consider what you would like your new routine to consist of.
Alexa Routines by Reed
What Skills And Functions Can Be Utilized And Performed Within An Alexa Routine?
Since the Alexa software ecosystem is so vast, a complete list would take up far too much space. But, there are some skills and functions that are more popular than others.
You are going to learn about those, in this section, and there’s a good chance that some of these will be exactly what you’re looking for.
Creating Your Routine:
- 1. Open your Alexa app.
- 2. Select your menu icon in the top left-hand corner.
- 3. Chose “Routines”
- 4. Select the “+” symbol to create the routine.
- 5. Use the corresponding “+” symbols to:
- 6. Enter your routine name.
- 7. Create your trigger (under “When this happens”).
- 8. Add the action(s) you’d like to take place.
The most notable skills and functions that can be utilized are those involving other Smart Home technologies. For example, if you own a Smart Home light system, or a Smart Home security system, there’s a good chance it will work with Alexa.
From that, you can set up a routine that involves the lights turning off or dimming; among many other choices. That way, Alexa controls your entire home, allowing you to automate a variety of different functions that you would have to perform manually.
For something that’s less reliant on Smart Home technology, you can set your Alexa to perform routines that involve playing a certain piece of music, giving you key information about the daily weather forecast, reminding you what’s on your calendar and daily schedule; among a variety of other functions.
Regardless of the functions that you make use of – and there are a lot more than the ones we just listed – you can string them together and create a routine. You can put any skill or function in your routine, ensuring that your routine encapsulates what is most important to you.
What Are Some Good Routine Ideas?
For many people, the best routines that you can create for Alexa are those that occur every single day. More often than not, these are simple routines that consist of just a few steps. But, these steps are meaningful, and they enhance your experience of the day profoundly.
To make your mornings a lot nicer, you can begin the day with a favorite piece of music. This piece of music can serve as an alarm clock, ensuring that you wake up, to something you love, when you need to.
Right after that, your Alexa can then read you the day’s itinerary, while also giving you information on the local weather and traffic conditions. All of this information is used to help you make better decisions, while also reminding you of what’s important.
If you have any Smart Home devices that are compatible with Alexa, you can go even further than that. You can have Alexa brighten the lights in your room, open up the curtains, lock or unlock the doors; among many other functions.
For a nighttime routine, the same basic premise applies. But, rather than having Alexa perform those same morning functions, Alexa can perform nighttime functions that make your entire nighttime experience significantly easier.
Since Alexa is connected to the internet, you can have the device read you different recipes based on the ingredients that you currently have.
Alexa will walk you through putting those recipes together, if you need help, so that they are put together properly. Then, you can have Alexa run a timer for you, so that you know when the oven or stove needs to be turned.
Right after you’re finished cooking your dinner, you can tell Alexa to turn on your television and open up Netflix – or any other streaming service, for that matter – so that you can enjoy a show before you go to bed.
Just as with the morning routine, if you have other Smart Home devices, then the process can become more elaborate, but also quite a bit easier.
Making use of the Alexa allows you to control your stove/oven – assuming it’s a Smart Stove/Oven – with just your voice. That way, as Alexa is helping you go through the recipe, certain functions are automatically activated, allowing you to focus on putting together the recipe and nothing more.
In the end, Alexa offers a plethora of great skills and functions. Making use of these skills and functions allows you to create some nifty routines that are guaranteed to enhance your day! By using this guide, you won’t have any problems creating routines that work for you!
Summary on how to Set Alexa Routines
1. In the Alexa app, tap on Routines.
2. Tap the + symbol in the top right corner.
3. Tap When this happens.
4. Select Voice from the two available options.
5. Type Start my morning into the text box.
6. Tap Save.
7. Tap Add Action.
8. Select Smart Home from the list.
9. Tap All Devices.
10. Find your light in the list and set it to 50% on.
11. Tap Next.
12. Tap Add Action.
13. Select Weather from the list.
14. Tap Next.
15. Tap Add Action.
16. Select Music from the list.
17. Add preferred radio station from TuneIn.
18. Tap Next.
19. Tap From.
20. Select your preferred device.
21. Tap Create to finish.
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