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Have you just purchased a new Amazon Echo device? Do these 6 things first



So you snapped up an Echo, Echo Dot, or another Echo device during Amazon's Prime Day extravaganza (or during one of Amazon's periodic Echo sales), and it's sitting in your kitchen waiting quietly for the next order. What now?

Before you can ask the Alexa-powered Echo to play your favorite Spotify playlist or turn on the lights in the living room, you need to fine-tune some key settings. Find out how you can train Alexa to recognize your voice, prevent her from just letting someone buy things on Amazon, tell her where you live and work, and more.

Create a Voting Profile

As soon as the new Echo is up and running, Alexa can start answering your questions and bidding. That said, it's a good idea to help Alexa get used to your voice as soon as possible. By creating a voice profile, you can train Alexa to both understand and recognize your voice, which comes in handy when it comes to asking Alexa to act or send messages to others.

Your Echo unit should have asked you to create a voice profile during the initial installation process, but skipping it (as I did the first time) is an easy way to go back.

On the Amazon Alexa app for iOS or Android, press the menu button, touch Settings> Alexa account> Recognized votes> Your vote then touch the big blue "Begin" button. Alexa will ask you four short sentences in your echo. When that's done, she'll get a much better grip on how you sound.

Customize your voice trading settings

By default, Echo lets you ̵

1; or anyone else in the earbuds – simply buy things on Amazon by asking Alexa. While it's certainly convenient to just say "Alexa, order laundry," you may not want the kids to unreservedly ask Alexa to buy them the latest Bakugan.

  echo 5 tips voice purchase 1 Ben Patterson / IDG

You can prevent Alexa from letting someone buy items on Amazon by entering a four-digit voice tag.

Fortunately, it's an easy way to add some rules of protection to Alexa's voice buying function so your backbones can't start ordering toys, candy, or whatever pops up in their adorably greedy little heads. You can also turn off voice purchases completely if you wish.

First, open the Amazon Alexa app on your iPhone or Android phone, click the menu button, and then click Settings> Alexa Account> Voice Purchase .

If you want to keep the voice purchase feature, but prevent the children from using it, you can add a four-digit voice code that you must say before Alexa agrees to buy something for you. Just turn on the voice code setting, and then insert a four-digit code. The next time you or anyone else asks Alexa to buy something, she will ask for your voice code before completing the purchase.

The thing with the kids, of course, is that in addition to being smart, they also remember everything you have to say, including voice tags. Therefore, you should probably ask Alexa to skip the voice tag if she recognizes your voice. (The voice profile you created is coming in handy.)

Just go back to the voice purchasing screen and turn on the Recognize Speakers setting. Now you don't have to say a voice tag when you ask Alexa to buy stuff on Amazon – and better yet – no one else will hear your code.

Last, but not least, you can turn off voice purchases completely by turning off the "Purchase with voice" setting.


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