Alexa For Dummies

Author:   Paul McFedries
Publisher:   John Wiley & Sons Inc
ISBN:  

9781119565864


Pages:   304
Publication Date:   11 December 2018
Format:   Paperback
Availability:   In stock   Availability explained
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Alexa For Dummies


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Overview

Upgrade your Echo expertise with this Dummies guide to all things Alexa Amazon's hugely popular family of Echo devices has made Alexa a household name. She can answer your questions, entertain you, and even help around the house. Alexa for Dummies is the perfect guide for Alexa users who want to get up and running with their Echo devices. From basic setup to making the most of Alexa's powerful smart home capabilities, this is your one-stop resource to all things Alexa. Whether you'll use Alexa to send text messages, play music, control your thermostat, look up recipes, replenish your pantry, or just search the internet for information, you'll find detailed instructions in this fun and easy-to-understand guide. Set up and personalize your Alexa device with an Amazon account and custom settings, including your preferred Alexa voice Use Alexa to play music throughout your home, stream videos online, and meet all your entertainment needs Unlock the power of advanced features like Alexa Skills and make your Alexa accessible Turn your ordinary house into a modern smart home with advanced smart home features and Echo accessories The virtual assistant you've dreamed of is now a reality with your favorite Echo device. Let Alexa For Dummies make your wish Alexa's command.

Full Product Details

Author:   Paul McFedries
Publisher:   John Wiley & Sons Inc
Imprint:   John Wiley & Sons Inc
Dimensions:   Width: 19.30cm , Height: 1.80cm , Length: 23.00cm
Weight:   0.578kg
ISBN:  

9781119565864


ISBN 10:   1119565863
Pages:   304
Publication Date:   11 December 2018
Audience:   Professional and scholarly ,  Professional & Vocational
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active
Availability:   In stock   Availability explained
We have confirmation that this item is in stock with the supplier. It will be ordered in for you and dispatched immediately.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1 About This Book 1 Foolish Assumptions 2 Icons Used in This Book 2 Beyond the Book 3 Where to Go from Here 3 Part 1: Getting Started with Alexa 5 Chapter 1: Getting to Know Alexa 7 What Is This Alexa That Everyone's Talking About (Or, Really, To)? 7 Meet your new assistant 8 Alexa's components 9 How Alexa works 11 Where Do You Get Alexa? 12 Figuring Out Which Alexa Device You Need 12 Checking out Amazon's Echo devices 13 Choosing an Alexa device 16 Learning What Alexa Can Do 17 Playing media 17 Communicating 18 Shopping 18 Getting help around the home 18 Getting news and information 18 Answering your questions 18 Accessing skills 19 Automating your home 19 Having fun 19 Chapter 2: Setting Up Alexa and Your Devices 21 Installing the Alexa App 21 Signing in to your Amazon account 22 Taking a tour of the Alexa app 25 Giving Alexa access to your device microphone 26 Alexa Feng Shui: Positioning Your Alexa Device 27 Adding Your Alexa Device 27 Adding your Echo device 28 Adding a third-party Alexa device 32 Personalizing Your Alexa Device 33 Creating a voice profile 33 Giving the device a fun name 34 Setting the device location 34 Setting the device time zone 35 Changing the device language 36 Changing the measurement units 36 Changing the background image if your device has a screen 37 Connecting External Speakers to Your Alexa Device 37 Connecting speakers or headphones using a cable 38 Connecting speakers or headphones via Bluetooth 39 Disconnecting paired Bluetooth speakers or headphones 40 Chapter 3: Learning Alexa Basics 43 Getting to Know Your Echo 43 Taking a closeup look at the far-field microphone 44 Pushing the Echo's buttons 45 Getting feedback from Alexa 46 Operating the Echo touchscreen 47 Getting to Know Alexa 48 Getting Alexa's attention 48 Keeping Alexa's attention 49 Ending the conversation 50 Enabling Brief mode 50 Some Useful Alexa Commands 51 Everyday-info commands 51 Information requests 52 Audio commands 52 Video commands 53 Alarm and timer commands 53 Calendar, reminder, and list commands 54 Communication commands 54 Shopping commands 55 Smart-home commands 55 Part 2: Having Fun with Alexa 57 Chapter 4: Playing Media 59 Listening to Music on Alexa 60 Playing music through Alexa 60 Linking to a music provider 60 Setting up a default music provider 61 Voice commands for controlling music 63 Accessing Alexa via the Amazon Music app 68 Playing third-party music through Alexa 69 Adjusting music quality 70 Listening to Other Audio Sources on Alexa 71 Tuning in to a radio station 71 Listening to a podcast 74 Hearing an audiobook 75 Having a Kindle book read out loud 77 Streaming Mobile Device Audio through Alexa 78 Watching Video on Alexa 79 Watching a movie trailer 80 Locating and playing web videos 80 Watching Amazon's Prime Video 81 Taking Photos with Alexa 81 Chapter 5: Communicating with Alexa 83 Managing Your Alexa Contacts List 84 Giving Alexa access to your contacts 84 Giving a contact a nickname 85 Editing contacts 86 Blocking a contact 86 Managing your profile and settings 86 Exchanging Text Messages 87 Sending a text using voice commands 87 Sending a text using the Alexa app 88 Receiving a text message 88 Making Voice or Video Calls 89 Making voice calls with voice commands 90 Making voice calls using the Alexa app 92 Making video calls with voice commands 93 Making video calls using the Alexa app 93 Connecting Alexa to your landline with an Echo Connect 94 Answering an incoming Alexa-to-Alexa call 94 Ending a call 95 Dropping In on Other Alexa Users 96 Letting folks drop in on you 96 Dropping in on someone using voice commands 97 Dropping in on someone using the Alexa app 98 Configuring global Drop In settings for your Alexa device 98 Using Your Alexa Device as an Intercom 100 Chapter 6: Using Alexa at Home 101 A Quick Word about Household Profiles 101 Shopping with Alexa 102 Enabling voice purchases 102 Getting product recommendations 103 Placing an order 103 Reordering an item 104 Ordering multiple items 104 Setting up a Voice Code for purchases 104 Check your delivery status 105 Getting delivery notifications 106 Making a donation 107 Creating Lists 107 Creating and managing lists 109 Adding and managing list items 111 Getting the Information You Need 112 Getting the weather forecast 113 Checking traffic 113 Hearing the latest news with the Flash Briefing 114 Configuring Alexa's sports update 116 Letting Alexa Manage Your Calendar 117 Linking your calendar to Alexa 118 Setting the default calendar 119 Unlinking a calendar 119 Managing calendar events 119 Setting Alexa Alerts 121 Getting Alexa to remind you of something 121 Setting an alarm 124 Running a timer 125 Customizing your alarm sounds 127 Putting Alexa in Do Not Disturb Mode 128 Part 3: Getting More out of Your Relationship with Alexa 131 Chapter 7: Asking Alexa Questions 133 Searching for Nearby Places 134 Asking for Financial Info 134 Getting Symptoms and Other Medical Facts 135 Asking Alexa to Do the Math 135 Converting Units 136 Getting Science Answers 137 Quizzing Alexa about the Culture 138 Bugging Alexa about Books 138 Asking Linguistic Questions 139 Asking Questions about Companies 140 Asking about Dates and Times 140 For Everything Else: Querying Wikipedia 141 Chapter 8: Adding Skills to Alexa 143 Understanding What a Skill Is 143 Checking Out Amazon's Alexa Skills Department 144 Enabling a Skill 147 Enabling a skill with a voice command 147 Enabling a skill using the Alexa app 148 Working with Skills 149 Invoking a skill 149 Viewing your enabled skills 150 Changing skill settings 151 Disabling a skill 152 Thirty Cool Alexa Skills to Try 153 Building Your Own Skill 155 Chapter 9: Making Alexa Accessible 159 Controlling Alexa If You Have a Speech Impairment 159 Making Alexa more speech accessible 160 Installing a text-to-speech app 160 Using Tap to Alexa 160 Texting without speech 162 Checking Out Alexa's Features for the Hearing Impaired 163 Making Alexa more hearing accessible 163 Enabling Closed Captioning 165 Enabling Alexa Captioning 165 Enabling Alexa's Features for the Vision Impaired 166 Making Alexa more vision accessible 166 Navigating with VoiceView 168 Zooming in with Screen Magnifier 170 Part 4: Controlling Your Smart Home 173 Chapter 10: Setting Up Your Smart Home 175 What's So Smart about a Smart Home? 176 Working with smart-home devices 177 Understanding smart-home connections 178 How does Alexa fit in? 179 Do you need a smart-home hub? 179 Setting Up Your Smart-Home Devices 180 Installing a Wi-Fi smart-home device 180 Understanding Wi-Fi Simple Setup 182 Discovering smart-home devices using an Alexa skill 182 Discovering Zigbee smart-home devices 184 Managing Smart-Home Devices 185 Viewing your smart-home devices 185 Renaming a smart-home device 187 Changing the device type 188 Disabling or deleting a smart-home device 189 Working with Smart-Home Devices 189 Controlling a smart-home device 189 Working with device scenes 190 Turning smart plugs on and off 192 Working with smart lights 192 Controlling smart thermostats 193 Keeping an eye on things with smart cameras 194 Other types of smart-home gear 195 Chapter 11: Uncovering Some Smarter Smart-Home Techniques 197 Creating Device Groups 198 Creating a smart-home group 198 Controlling a smart-home group 200 Managing a smart-home group 201 Alexa in Stereo: Working with Speaker Sets 202 Creating a speaker set 203 Playing music through a speaker set 205 Streaming Music to Multiple Rooms 207 Setting up multi-room music 208 Playing multi-room music 209 Fixing multi-room music sync problems 210 Automating Alexa with Routines 211 Understanding routine actions 212 Creating a routine 212 Running a routine 214 Working with IFTTT Applets 215 Connecting your IFTTT and Amazon accounts 216 Enabling an IFTTT applet 216 Checking out some Alexa applets 218 Part 5: The Part of Tens 219 Chapter 12: Ten (Times Ten) Ridiculously Fun Alexa Tricks 221 Ten Ways to Ask Alexa to Tell a Joke 222 Ten Alexa Wordplay Tricks 222 Ten Ways to Get Alexa to Sing 223 Ten Oddball Things to Ask Alexa to Do 224 Ten Funny Questions to Ask Alexa 224 Ten Ways to Get Alexa to Tell a Story 225 Ten Ways to Get Personal with Alexa 226 Ten Movie Easter Eggs 226 Ten TV Easter Eggs 227 Ten Music Easter Eggs 228 Chapter 13: Ten Things That Can Go Wrong with Alexa (And How to Fix Them) 229 Troubleshooting 101 230 Restarting your Echo 230 Updating your Echo 230 Resetting your Echo 231 Alexa or Your Echo Device is Unresponsive 232 Your Echo Device Isn't Using the Latest Software 233 You Can't Connect to Your Wi-Fi Network 234 You're Having Trouble Streaming Media 236 You're Having Trouble Connecting a Bluetooth Device 237 You don't see a Bluetooth device 237 You can't pair with a Bluetooth device 238 You Ordered Something Accidentally 238 Alexa Doesn't Understand Your Commands 240 You're Having Trouble Making Calls 241 You Changed Your Wi-Fi Network Password 242 A Smart-Home Device Doesn't Work Properly 243 Chapter 14: Ten Ways to Beef Up Alexa Security and Privacy 245 Make Sure Your Wi-Fi Network Is Locked Up Tight 246 Change Alexa's Wake Word 248 Stop Alexa from Listening (And Watching) 250 Trash Sensitive Alexa Recordings 250 Configure Alexa Not to Use Your Personal Data 252 Shut Down Alexa's Communications 254 Turn communications off 254 Revoke access to your contacts 255 Secure Your Amazon Account 255 Give your Amazon account a bulletproof password 256 Turn on Amazon's Two-Step Verification 257 Delete Your Saved Wi-Fi Passwords 258 Revoke a Skill's Permissions 260 Deregister Your Alexa Device 260 Index 263

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Author Information

Paul McFedries has worked with, programmed, and, yes, talked to computers large and small since 1975. Although he's now primarily a writer, Paul has worked as a programmer, consultant, database developer, and website developer. He has written more than 95 books that have sold more than four million copies worldwide.

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