Humans are creatures of habit. A study a few years back showed that while there are millions of apps available for our smartphones, most of us use just five non-native apps that we’ve installed from an app store.
The same might be said for our Echo devices. We love Alexa for playing music, setting alarms and timers, or creating shopping lists. But did you know that app developers, just like those who have created apps for your mobile phone, have now created more than 30,000 Alexa skills? Or that Alexa scientists and engineers are working on machine-learning techniques that will make it easier for you to discover these great skills?
In December, we shared a list of 10 cool things you might not know Alexa could do. Now, we're following up with a list of 10 great skills that will expand your Alexa horizons and provide you and your family enjoyment and utility.
AnyPod will play any podcast - just ask! Subscribe to your favorite podcasts and play through all of the latest episodes with ease. For example: “Alexa, ask AnyPod to play The Joe Rogan Experience”.
The Wall Street Journal
Discover the latest news, podcasts and market updates from The Wall Street Journal.
Ambient sounds: Cricket Sounds
Cricket Sounds is an ambient relaxing sleep sounds loop to help you block out unwanted noises, encourage relaxation, reduce stress, or help you fall asleep!
Headspace is meditation made simple. With this skill, it’s even easier to build a meditation practice that fits into your daily schedule. Enable for access to a new guided meditation every day, plus a sleep exercise to help you wind down.
Price it right
Challenge your friends and family to see who can more accurately guess the price of Amazon items! You can play at home or with people from around the world.
Guess the correct song title and artist. Challenge your friends and family in live competitions or compete against music fans across the country! Master playlists from each decade.
Explore TED's vast library of inspiring talks and ideas worth spreading by world-renowned speakers and thought leaders from around the globe. Play the latest or a random TEDtalk, search for talks by topic, or by speaker name.
Get a reliable ride in minutes with the Uber skill. Simply say “Alexa ask Uber for a ride” and an UberX will be there in minutes. You can also change your default pickup location, ask for a ride status, or cancel your ride.
This skill lets you add items to the shopping lists on your OurGroceries app. The app keeps your grocery lists instantly synchronized on all the iPhone and Android smartphones in your household. It also tracks recipes, takes photos of items, and scans barcodes.