How to get started with Amazon Echo and Alexa

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(Pocket-lint) - Your Amazon Echo device has conscionable arrived and you mightiness person glanced astatine the quick-start usher successful the container from Amazon, but beyond the basal setup, bash you cognize the archetypal things you should bash with your caller Echo? 

Alexa is the virtual adjunct wrong Amazon Echo devices - for a briefing connected however Alexa works, cheque retired What tin Alexa do? 

We're astir to tally done our database of the apical things to bash to get started, but archetypal cheque retired this video for the basal steps including the archetypal acceptable up with the Alexa app: 


Set up Echo with the Alexa app oregon a web browser

As we mentioned, your Amazon Echo usher volition archer you to download the Alexa app from the App Store oregon Google Play.

Once successful the app, click Devices and past the + icon successful the top-right. This portion of the app has got a small much analyzable successful caller times arsenic the fig of Alexa-capable devices (and what they tin do) has exploded. 


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Tap connected Add Device, past prime what benignant of instrumentality it is (usually Amazon Echo). Finally, prime the close enactment from the database of Echo devices. 

Alternatively, you can use this website to acceptable up a caller device, whether that's mounting up your Echo successful the archetypal spot oregon adding different devices oregon services astatine a aboriginal date. 

Set a default euphony work connected Amazon Echo

With a talker built into the Echo, galore radical bargain an Echo for music. Out of the box, your Amazon Echo volition person entree to your Amazon euphony room - successful different words, thing you've purchased from Amazon and, if you person a subscription, Amazon Prime euphony oregon the Amazon Music Unlimited subscription service.

There's besides the quality to link the Echo to your Spotify, Deezer oregon Apple Music account, truthful you don't person to usage Amazon's euphony service. You tin prime the default euphony work you want, meaning euphony volition ever beryllium played from that account.

To bash that, unfastened the Alexa app, spell to More > Settings > Music & Podcasts (under Alexa preferences) and alteration your default euphony and profanity filter astatine the bottom. 


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It's besides worthy noting that your Amazon Echo volition work books to you by elemental commands "Alexa, work my book" for Audible playback oregon "Alexa, work my Kindle book" for reading your Kindle library.

Fine-tune your Amazon Echo flash briefing and news

"Alexa, play my flash briefing" oregon "Alexa, play the news" volition commencement your Amazon Echo reciting quality updates.

Under Settings > News you tin prime from a scope of antithetic quality services including BBC News, Sky News, CNBC News and more. This volition prime a default quality work to present your news.

Or you tin prime the contented for the flash briefing which volition present quality from a scope of antithetic sources, similar upwind and sport. You tin find those settings connected the leafage supra too.


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Sync Alexa with your Google, iCloud oregon Outlook Calendar

Your Amazon Echo is beauteous useful astatine helping you support connected apical of your to-do list, but it's besides capable to assistance you negociate your day-to-day activities. By connecting to your Google, iCloud oregon Outlook calendars you tin get Alexa to cheque what's happening contiguous oregon astatine a circumstantial hr connected a time successful the future.

To bash this simply spell to Settings > Calendar successful the app. You'll request to authorise entree to your calendar, but otherwise, setup is easy. You tin besides take a default calendar for Alexa to adhd events to. 

Download much Alexa skills 

Alexa is beauteous astute and there's a batch of things it tin assistance retired with, but you tin further amended the usefulness of your Amazon Echo by adding applicable skills.

You tin browse done them successful the Alexa app oregon connected the Amazon website arsenic you tin spot here: 


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Skills are fundamentally plugins that let you to bash a assortment of things. Just popular into the skills section and hunt for thing that acceptable your needs.

You tin find immoderate ideas of different skills that are amusive to effort successful our Amazon Echo tips and tricks article. You tin adjacent bash things like connecting your Fitbit to spot however good you slept past nighttime oregon however galore steps you've taken passim the day.

Connect Alexa to astute location devices

It mightiness look obvious, but Alexa is compatible with a scope of antithetic smarthome devices, giving you the powerfulness to power everything from your heating to your lighting if you person suitable exertion successful your home.

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Activate and link the applicable Smart Home skills successful the interface to get started. Alexa gives you the powerfulness to power each sorts of things similar afloat power of your Philips Hue lighting oregon adjusting the heating connected your Nest Thermostat.

We person a afloat usher connected mounting up an Alexa astute location close here.

Change your Echo aftermath word

This 1 isn't needfully essential, but you mightiness find it useful particularly if you person idiosyncratic called "Alex" surviving successful your house.

Under each Echo device's settings, you tin take to alteration the aftermath connection to thing else, though the prime is beauteous limited. Alas, there's nary enactment for "Hal", but you tin get your mini sci-fi nerdgasm by changing it to "computer". Other aftermath words see "Alexa", "Echo" oregon "Amazon".

You'll person to alteration the aftermath connection for each independant Echo device.

Adjust media and alarm volumes

If you're struggling to perceive Alexa oregon if euphony playback is excessively large past you tin property the buttons connected the apical of the Echo set to your preference. Alternatively "Alexa, crook it up", "Alexa, trim the volume" oregon different akin commands volition rapidly and easy alteration the media measurement too.

Voice commands besides alteration the measurement connected a fig ground with 10 being the loudest. We'd highly urge mounting an alarm measurement you're assured volition beryllium large capable to aftermath you up if that's what you mean to usage it for.

Restrict Alexa dependable purchasing from Amazon

By default, Amazon Echo devices are each acceptable up to let casual purchasing of products straight from Amazon. As if it's not unsafe capable being capable to get a pizza delivered to your doorway by conscionable utilizing your voice, you tin easy person a scope of acold much costly products ordered with conscionable a fewer mutterings.

To forestall household members breaking your slope relationship oregon accidentally ordering unwanted goods you tin follow our usher to restricting dependable purchasing utilizing a pin

Multi-room euphony playback

The Amazon Echo supports multi-room audio, which is simply a large summation to Alexa's accomplishment acceptable and means you tin perceive to your favourite tunes passim the house.

If you're fortunate capable to person respective Amazon Echos past cheque retired our usher connected how to acceptable up and play euphony connected aggregate Amazon Echo devices.

Writing by Adrian Willings and Dan Grabham. Editing by Britta O'Boyle. Originally published connected 1 October 2016.

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