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5 awesome hacks to upgrade your Alexa music experience:

Echo dot next to records

#1. Easily play music across all the Echo speakers in your home

Everyone knows that it's great to play music across rooms -- but what you might not know is how easy it is with Alexa.

How? All you have to do is add "everywhere" to the end of your Alexa command.

  • "Alexa, play Cardi B everywhere"

Pro Tip: If you don't already have Alexa speakers in rooms across your home, I highly recommend considering adding a few Echo Dots (priced at $30, they're 40% off right now). The more seamlessly you can talk to Alexa, the more you can get out of her.


#2. A foolproof way to turn on your playlists

If you have trouble turning on your favorite Spotify, Apple Music, etc. playlists, you're not alone.

How?

  1. Link your preferred music provider account to Alexa. Follow these simple set-up steps, including setting it as the default music service (takes 1 minute or less)
  2. Try turning on the playlist with an Alexa command. "Alexa, play morning music 2019 playlist" (insert your playlist name)
  3. If that doesn't work (or you can't remember the playlist name). Create a simple Alexa routine that plays your favorite playlist when you say "Alexa, playlist"

Pro Tip: If you don't link your preferred music provider account to Alexa, it will default Amazon Music.
  • If you have Prime, you'll get access to 2 million songs for free (but you won't be able to access your Spotify, Apple Music, etc. playlists)
  • If you don't have Prime, you can can still listen to Amazon Music playlists and stations for free, but you'll have to listen to a few ads as well


#3. "Alexa, wake me up to Otis Redding at 7am"

With Alexa, it's easy to wake up to a music alarm instead of your usual beeping alarm.

How? "Alexa, wake me up to (genre / artist / song of your choice!) at (your wake-up time)"


#4. If you love music and games, you'll love Song Quiz

Song Quiz is an absolutely awesome Alexa game (it's got 4.8 stars and over 10,000 reviews!) where you guess the song and artist based on a short music clip. You can play with friends and family -- and if you're playing alone, the game will assign another Alexa user as your opponent.

How? 

  • "Alexa, play Song Quiz"


Pro Tip #1: Link your Amazon account to Song Quiz for access to 500 more songs. Just open Song Quiz in your Alexa app by clicking here > Settings > Link Account and follow simple on-screen prompts.

Pro Tip #2: Song Quiz is a great game to play with seniors. When prompted to select a music decade for the song clips, try the 1960's!


#5. Alexa can announce the name of a song before it plays

People have gotten used to glancing down at their phones to check what song is playing. You can't do that with an Echo speaker, but if you enable Song ID you'll never have to stop the music again to ask Alexa what song is playing.

How? 

  • "Alexa, turn on Song ID" (to enable)
  • "Alexa, turn off Song ID" (to disable)


Pro Tip #1: As of now, Song ID is only available for Amazon Music.

Pro Tip #2: If you want to know song info but you don't want to Alexa to interrupt your music before every song plays, an Echo Show will display the song name and artist played via any music service.

Alexa Music 101


For Alexa music newbies, here are the 3 things you need to know to get started listening to music with Alexa:

#1. Just say "Alexa, play Cardi B" to turn on some jams

You can play any song, artist or genre with a simple Alexa command.

  • "Alexa, play Despacito"
  • "Alexa, play Country Music"
  • "Alexa, play Bruce Springsteen songs"


#2. Easily control your music with Alexa 

Here are 3 useful Alexa commands:

  • "Alexa, skip song"
  • "Alexa, turn up the music" (or turn down the music)
  • "Alexa, pause"


#3. Link your preferred music service to Alexa (takes 1 minute)

Follow these simple set-up steps to link Spotify, Apple Music, Pandora, etc. to Alexa and set it as your default music service (it will take you less than 1 minute).

Interesting posts about Alexa this week


Here's why this Amazon executive says shopping with Alexa is 'going to be even more exciting than the launch of the iPhone' (Business Insider). Amazon believes that knowledge of its customers and the rise of smart speakers are together paving the way for voice shopping with Alexa to become the future of how people buy things.

When the 'smart home' is actually a hospital room (Engadget). EIR Healthcare is building modular hospital rooms with Alexa built in. The company sees Alexa as a way to streamline various activities that happen every day in a hospital room such as calling a nurse or adjusting the temperature.

The 7 best Alexa cooking hacks you definitely want to try (Business Insider & VoiceBrew). Check out my latest Business Insider article covering the best Alexa cooking hacks -- from using Alexa to remember where you keep infrequently used kitchen tools to announcing that dinner is ready across the Echo speakers in your home.

5 Life-Changing Amazon Alexa Hacks for Parenting (The Mom Kind & VoiceBrew). From giving free speech therapy to keeping your supplies stocked to automating your child's bedtime routine, Alexa is the best child care you never knew you had.

Alexa announcements feature now works on every Alexa-compatible device (The Verge). The Alexa announcements feature lets you broadcast a message across all of the Alexa devices in your home, but initially it only worked with Echo speakers. Now you can use this feature across all speakers that have Alexa built in -- from Alexa-compatible Sonos speakers to Facebook's Portal to the Amazon Fire TV Cube.
If you have questions or ideas, I'd love to hear from you. Reply to this email or get in touch at kp@voicebrew.com. Thanks for being a subscriber to VoiceBrew!
Katherine Prescott
Founder, VoiceBrew
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