In a relatively short span of time, Amazon’s smart assistant Alexa has become a trailblazer of AI-powered technology that has made life comfy for legions of users. Through its troupe of Echo, Echo Dot and Sonos smart home speakers, Amazon Alexa has seeped into millions of households. However, getting to know Alexa’s enormous hidden capabilities requires some time. Which is why, we made a printable list of 60 best Alexa commands of 2020 for those who are new to the most popular and useful AI assistant on the market.
Since Internet-of-things has already heralded its arrival in the 21st century, Alexa will play a pivotal role in building smart homes. For starters, you can initiate your smart home experience by asking “Alexa, what can you do?” You can learn more ways to make Alexa work by reading through our list of 60 best Alexa commands that will be incredibly useful in your everyday life.
So, are you ready to summon Alexa and become the master of your Alexa smart home speakers aka Amazon Echo and Echo Dot? Let’s get started.
SEE ALSO: 200 Funny Alexa Easter Eggs
Best Alexa Commands of 2020: Down to the Basics
1. Ask for help
If you seek any sort of help or want to troubleshoot a problem, simply ask, “Alexa, help.” Alternately, you can instantly a strike up a conversation with Alexa by saying “Alexa, let’s chat”.
2. Stop or Pause Alexa: “Alexa, Shut up” or “Alexa, Pause.”
3. Change the Volume
Want Alexa to crank up the volume? Try saying: “Alexa, set the volume to 9.” For reducing the volume, simply say “Alexa, turn down the volume by a notch” or “Alexa, turn down the volume”. That’s all.
Best Alexa Commands for Time Management
4. Get the current time: “Alexa, what’s the time?”
5. Set an Alarm
Amazon Echo/Echo dot has made setting up an alarm ridiculously easy. All you gotta do is to say, “Alexa, set an alarm for 7 AM” or choose the time of your choice. Simple as that.
6. Check the time left until next alarm: “Alexa, how much time is left for my next alarm?”
7. Set a timer: “Alexa, set a timer for 35 minutes”
8. Cancel the timer: “Alexa, cancel the timer”
Best Alexa Commands for Fire TV
9. Directly Control Fire TV: “Alexa, [play, pause, resume, rewind, fast-forward, stop] on Fire TV.”
10. Search for movies and TV series on Fire TV: “Alexa, search for [insert movie/TV series name] on Fire TV” or simply ask “Alexa, find [insert movie/TV show name] on Fire TV.”
11. Open an app: “Alexa, launch Netflix on Fire TV”
12. Find more movies by an actor: “Alexa, show me movie titles with Al Pacino on Fire TV”
13. Transition to Playstation: “Alexa, switch to playstation on Fire TV”
Best Alexa Commands to Play Music
Music aficionados cheer up! There’s nothing like laying in bed and listening to your favourite music after a long winding day at work. And, what better tool can lift your mood other than Alexa?
Endowed with the ability to play millions of songs transcending multiple genres from streaming services such as Spotify, Amazon Music and iHeartRadio, Alexa knows music inside out.
14. For listening to your favourite tune just order “Alexa, play my favourite song” and Alexa instantly obliges.
15. Change the Song
Easily change a song according to your whim. Simply say, “Alexa, change this song.” Wait, there’s more in the offing!
16. Check what song is playing
Do you have a Spotify playlist? If yes, then Alexa can recognize the currently playing song on your speaker. To know the song, simply ask, “Alexa, what song is playing?”
17. Play Music based on your mood/activity
Alexa has become smart enough to play a song based on your current mood. Amazon Music users have this cool option to ask Alexa for suitable music based on their activity.
So, if you’re working out, cooking, studying, or want to take a nap, Alexa plays music that gels well with your activity. For instance, you can ask “Alexa, play psychedelic music”, if you are feeling groggy and dazed.
18. Play Spotify Playlist
Attention spotify premium users! You can derive an optimal music experience by syncing your Spotify premium account with Amazon Echo. To play a specific playlist (Grunge and Britpop, for instance) order: “Alexa, play my Grunge playlist” or “Alexa, play my Britpop playlist.”
19. Search music based on genre/artist
Want to play a song or any band’s music that is ringing in your head for a while? Just order Alexa and it will skim through a huge playlist, just to play your requested song based on genre or artist. For example, you can say: “Alexa, play Supersonic” or “Alexa, play an Oasis song.”
Best Alexa Commands to Activate useful Alexa Skills
Alexa currently boasts over 30,000 voice apps sitting pretty in the Alexa Skills Store. That’s a massive number of features and this is exactly what makes Alexa tick.
Skills are of immense help for an AI assistant since they handle a gamut of services right from hailing an Uber ride to making a payment with American Express. In short, skills make Alexa users happy.
Once you have enabled a particular skill in the Skills section of Alexa app, just say “Alexa, play [insert the name of skill].”
20. Hail a Cab
Running short on time for an important job interview or event? Call Alexa to book an Uber ride for you. Instead of saying “Alexa, open the Uber skill”, you just have to say “Alexa, I want a ride” That’s all.
21. Get real-time Traffic details
Feeling iffy about driving to work because of traffic snarls? Hang on! Enquire Alexa about the current traffic state in your city with questions such as “Alexa, traffic” or “Alexa, what’s the traffic like?”
22. Get Weather updates
Gutted because of the sombre and overcast weather outside? Fret no more, Alexa will tell you when to expect a clear bright sky. To ascertain a weather update, ask “Alexa, what’s the weather like in Manchester, England?”, especially if you are someone residing outside the U.S.
If you live in the U.S. simply ask, “Alexa, is it really cold outside?” or “Alexa, what’s today’s weather like?” What’s more, you can even ask, “Alexa, tell me the room temperature?”
Note: Alexa sometimes encounters problems whilst giving accurate weather details if you reside outside of the U.S.
23. Know what movies are playing in your locality
Wanna direly watch the latest sci-fi flick that has smashed all box-office records? Alexa lets you know what movies are currently running in the nearest cinema. Simply ask “Alexa, what movies are playing nearby? and your Echo device blurts out all the nearby theatres playing those movies.
24. You can also check current stock prices and gauge market trends by saying “Alexa, ask opening bell for the price of Microsoft”. Here, Opening bell is an Alexa skill.
Best Alexa Commands for Food
25. Ask for recipes: “Alexa, how do you make French Lasagna?”
26. Order a pizza: “Alexa, open Domino’s and place my order”
27. Alternately, if you prefer Pizza Hut: “Alexa, tell Pizza Hut to place an order”
Best Alexa Commands for Information about a Place or finding a thing
Both Amazon Echo and Echo dot speakers are well-equipped to draw on extensive web searches on a gamut of topics such as space facts, history, deep sea mysteries, metric conversions, et al. They can also easily navigate to Wikipedia to accurately answer your questions.
28. Know about countries, seas, etc.
If you want to find out the capital of a Balkan country, simply ask “Alexa, what’s the capital of Hungary?” or ask questions such as “Alexa, why is the black sea called the black sea?
29. Pull up Wikipedia information
Intrigued by a place, company or famous person? Simply hop into its Wikipedia page and say “Alexa, Wikipedia Seattle” and Alexa will pull up an extensive history of the city’s past, famous personalities, population, etc.
30. Ask about books and authors
Want to know who wrote the science fiction classic, The War of the Worlds? Simply ask, “Alexa, who wrote The War of the Worlds?” and pat comes Alexa’s reply: H.G. Wells.
31. Know about your favourite TV Shows/Movies
Awe-struck by the characters of your favourite sitcom? Find out more about them by asking, “Alexa, who plays Kramer in Seinfeld?”
32. Ask about Mountains, Lakes, Oceans, etc.
Alexa reckons it possesses heaps of knowledge. You can quickly test those credentials and save your research time by asking questions such as “What is the third highest mountain peak in the world?” and pat comes Alexa’s reply, “Kanchenjunga.”
Likewise, you can ask more questions such as “Alexa, which is the biggest lake in the world?”
Best Alexa Commands for shopping on Amazon
Alexa has made shopping online a cinch now. Right from groceries to gadgets, all Amazon Prime members can avail Alexa’s services to place orders, and even cancel or reorder Prime items from the e-commerce behemoth.
33. Order a new product
Just blurt out “Alexa, order shoes” and Alexa will suggest a list of various shoe brands to purchase from and even send more search results directly to your smartphone.
34. Add items to your groceries or shopping list
Forget some grocery essentials once again? No worries, neatly slip in missing items to your shopping list by simply asking “Alexa, add brown eggs to my shopping list.”
35. Recheck your shopping list
Want to keep your forgetfulness a secret? You can ask Alexa to go through your shopping list again just to ensure you did not miss out on something. Just ask, “Alexa, read my shopping list” and you will be fine.
36. Reorder Products
Interestingly, your smart AI assistant Alexa keeps a tab of your preferences and remembers recent purchases. Hence, for placing a reorder, you can say “Alexa, reorder shoes” and Alexa will understand what brand of shoes you wear, your correct shoe size, etc.
Best Alexa Commands for Audio Books
37. Play Audio books
Alexa has upped the ante on its rivals with a unique and useful feature for its trademark book service, Audible. Yes, with the introduction of commands, you can directly ask Alexa to read out an audiobook that you purchased off of Amazon. For instance, you can ask, “Alexa, play The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde on Audible”. Of course, you can include the name of any other audiobook.
38. To resume or pause an audiobook: Just say “Alexa, resume” or “Alexa, pause.”
39. Select a specific chapter: “Alexa, go to chapter[insert the number]
40. Skim through chapters in an audiobook: “Alexa, previous chapter” or “Alexa, next chapter.”
Alexa Commands for Doing Translations
41. Translate from other languages to English
If you have the handbook of a new exotic language or catchphrase that you are trying to understand at the ready, just ask Alexa to translate it. For instance, you can ask “Alexa, translate Buenos días to English” and pat comes Alexa’s reply “Good Morning”. You can also find these translations in your Alexa app as well.
42. Translate English to other languages
For non-native speakers, your Echo device makes translating English sentences to another language, say Portuguese, incredibly easy. Try saying, “Alexa, translate how are you doing to Portuguese.”
Again, you can find all these translations in your Alexa app.
Best Alexa Commands to Read News
43. Get the Latest News
Head over straight to the Flash Briefings section of the Alexa app or Skills store to keep yourself abreast with the latest news around the world. To listen to your news briefing, simply ask “Alexa, what’s the news today?” and voilà!
44. Motivational Quotes
Sprinkle in some motivational quotes, and devotionals along with your daily news feed dose. Try saying, “Alexa, tell me a motivational quote for today?”
Alexa Commands for Definitions and Spellings
45. Get Definitions
You can find out the definitions of complex-sounding words that you are not familiar with. For example, you can ask “Alexa, what’s the definition of Glissando?”
46. Figure out spellings
Easily figure out spellings of hard-to-spell words by simply asking “Alexa, how do you spell Acciaccatura”. Of course, you can slip in any other word.
Alexa Commands for Math and Calculations
47. Relatively Simple Calculations
Tormented by maths equations? Put your genius AI assistant, Alexa, to use and solve them all in a jiffy. Just ask something like, “Alexa, what’s 871 plus 47? or “Alexa, what’s 93 times 13?”
48. Advanced Maths
Alexa has become so deft at solving complex maths equations, there’s no need to whip out your calculator for doing just about any calculation. For example, try saying “Alexa, 37 factorial” and you will be battered with a weird combination of decimals, numbers and strange alphabets resembling a space-time oddity.
Best Alexa Commands for Calls and Sending texts
Currently, both Amazon Echo and Echo Dot users can make free phone calls to phone numbers in countries such as U.S., Canada, and Mexico only. But, via Alexa’s nifty DropIn function everyone can make free voice and video calls to other users with an Alexa-enabled device at their home.
49. To answer a phone call: “Alexa, answer the call” or “Alexa, answer”
50. End a phone call: “Alexa, hang up” or “Alexa, end the call”
51. To call another user or friend, say, “Alexa, call[insert name]”
52. Read Messages: To play all unread messages, just say, “Alexa, play messages.”
53. Send text messages
Feeling a tad drowsy to type in a message to a fellow Alexa-using pal? No worries, just blurt out, “Alexa, send [insert name] a message” or “Alexa, message [insert name]”
54. Check Notifications: Alternately to catch up with notifications, say “Alexa, what did I miss?”
Alexa Commands for Greetings
55. Want Alexa to be an obedient AI assistant that works as per your whims? Now get Alexa to greet you after a grinding day at work without much effort. Just say “Alexa, I’m home” and Alexa greets you with a warm welcome which is also customizable.
56. Celebrate A Birthday
Alexa is pretty good at celebrating birthdays with full gusto and what better occasion to use it than your loved one’s birthday. Simply ask, “Alexa, sing Happy birthday” and your echo device starts playing the happy birthday song.
Alexa Commands for Sports Lovers
57. Get match results: “Alexa, give me my sports update”
58. Check the results of a game: “Alexa, what was the score of the [insert team] match?”
59. Get the latest English Premier League standings or fixtures: “Alexa, what are the current EPL standings?”
60. Find out who won late last night’s nail biter: “Alexa, did the [insert the name of the team] win?”
Customized Voice Commands (Bonus)
You can also create custom voice commands for varied purposes and schedule events such as traffic or weather reports, playing news through a nifty feature called Routines which gives you the leeway to finish multiple tasks with a single utterance. However, you would need to sync your Alexa speaker with a smart dome device, a la Internet-of-Things.
For example, you can create a “routine” that turns the lights on in your home when you say “Alexa, I’m home”. Inversely, all the connected smart home devices will turn off when you say “Alexa, I’m going out”.