Amazon rolls out Alexa ‘Announcements’ to make your Echo a PA system
Remember the PA system that blasted messages to every room in your elementary school? Yeah, Alexa is that now.
You can now use Amazon’s voice assistant to broadcast messages to all the Echo devices in your house, and whatever unsuspecting souls happen to be near them.
Amazon announced the new feature earlier this month, but it’s finally fully rolled out, according to the company’s newsletter.
It’s pretty straightforward. Just tell your echo to “Announce” or “Broadcast,” followed by your important words.
Unlike the Echo’s person-to-person calling, the audio isn’t live. Echo devices throughout your household will play a short chime, followed by a recording of your announcement (in your voice).
If you’re afraid of trolling roommates, never fear: You can put your Echo in “Do Not Disturb” mode to stop it from receiving such messages. Just tell Alexa, “Don’t disturb me” to keep your room an announcement-free zone.
In the past, you’ve been able to call others from your Echo, and set reminders to yourself as well. But now, for the first time, you can send mass messages to people within your household.
This will be an easy way to broadcast to your kids that dinner is ready, or to hurry them along if they’re running late for school. It will also be a great way for me to send friendly late-night greetings to my sleeping roommates. Sorry, but that’s the price you now pay when you live in a house with multiple Echo devices, and me.