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11 cool things you might not know your smart speaker can do!

15 July 2019

Smart speakers can do so much more than play your favourite music or tell you the weather. Here’s a list of 11 cool things you might not know about.

If there’s something your smart speaker does that you love, share it with us in the comments!

1. Have fun with the kids

Trivia night, musical chairs, tell a story, musical statues, there are lots of opportunities to learn, play, imagine and have fun with your smart speaker, including Google Home, Amazon Echo, and Apple HomePod.

Some ideas for you to try with the kids:

  • “OK Google, let’s play space trivia.”
  • “Hey Google, let’s play a game.”
  • “OK Google, help me with my homework.”
  • “Hey Google, tell me a story.”
  • “Alexa, play twenty questions.”
  • “Alexa, open the Magic Door.”
  • “Alexa, fart.”
  • “Alexa, how many days until.”
  • “Siri, tell me a bedtime story.”
  • “Siri, 8 ball.”
  • “Siri, are we there yet?”
Smart Speaker helping with cooking

2. Cooking tips and ideas

Your smart speaker can’t do the actual cooking for you, but it can definitely help you in the kitchen!

Ask for recipes, metric conversions, nutritional facts, which wine to pair with a meal, set cooking timers, and play your cooking playlist.  It’s the ultimate cooking companion that won’t sneak a taste to ‘make sure it’s not poison’!

3. Help you maintain a healthy lifestyle

Since it’s your personal assistant, your smart speaker can also help you keep up a healthy lifestyle and take care of yourself.  Like checking on your FitBit stats, providing nutritional information or prompting you to do a workout and playing your work out mix. Alexa even has a 7-minute workout program.

Some smart speakers also have prompts for relaxation and meditation. Take a look and see what yours has to offer!

4. Record your shopping list

This one is super handy! When you’re making breaky or cooking dinner and notice you’ve run out of something, just ask your smart speaker to add it to your shopping list. You can then access your list on your smartphone when you’re out shopping.

Google Home, Alexa and Siri all have list functionality. For some smart speakers there may be a couple of things to do to set it up, but then you’re good to go! 

  • “Hey Google, add bread, milk and coco pops to my shopping list.”
  • “Alexa, add ice cream to my shopping list.”
  • “Hey Siri, add chocolate to my grocery list.”

5. Countdown timer

Need to leave the house in 15 minutes? Check on the roast dinner in 45 minutes? Give the kids a reminder for how long they can play a game? Set a time limit on the workout you’re going to rock in the lounge room?  You can use your smart speaker to set a timer.  It takes the hassle out of watching the clock!

6. Control your smart home

Tasks in your home are getting smarter! Things like the lights, temperature, garage door, appliances and home security can be controlled via your smart speaker. Of course, you need the relevant smart item installed to then control it, so don’t try telling Google Home to turn on the lights when you don’t have smart globes installed!

With Siri, you set up your HomeKit accessories in the Home app.  For Alexa, just connect the smart home devices and away you go. And for Google Home you just need to set up the smart device.

If you have your smart speaker virtual assistant on your smartphone, you can even control your smart home when you’re not at home! For example, communicate with your Apple Homepod from your iPhone or Apple Watch, or with your Google Home from your Google Pixel mobile phone.

7. Play fun games for the adults

Games aren’t just for kids! Just ask and your smart speaker will deliver the fun, with games geared for adults.

On Google Home try Song Quiz, Brainstormer Trivia Game, Akinator, Math Logic, Absurd is the Word and Star Wars Trivia (yes Star Wars!) or Game of Thrones Trivia. Your Google Assistant will be your game show host.

If you have a smart speaker with Alexa, try Akinator, Blackjack (Beat The Dealer), Escape the Room, Millionaire Quiz Game, Jeopardy, Yes Sire and Truth or Dare.

Smart Speaker Smart Home

8. Chat with people in other rooms of the house

Have multiple smart speakers in the house? You can use them like an intercom system to talk to people in other rooms.

On the Amazon Echo the feature is called Drop In and you can message another Echo in another room or broadcast to all Echo speakers in the house. While on Google Home you can use Broadcast to do exactly that, broadcast to all speakers in the house, and even better, it can send a message from your smartphone to your speakers, communicating with people at home even when you aren’t. “OK Google, broadcast I’m on my way home”.

This is very helpful when you don’t want to have to scream out “Dinner is ready!!” or “It’s time to leave for school. LET’S GO!”.

9. Control your TV without the remote

Some smart speakers can be used to control your TV. For example, if your TV has Google Chromecast you can use Google Home as a voice-controlled remote control. You can turn your TV on or off, change the volume, pause, skip episodes when binge watching or tell your TV what to play.  Or spend the time to set up your Amazon smart speaker and give Alexa verbal instructions for your TV.

10. Remember things for you

We forget things. All. The. Time. But don’t worry, your smart speaker can remember things for you!

Want to remember the code for your suitcase, just say “OK Google, remember my suitcase code is…” and your Google Home will keep that detail tucked away and remember it for you next time you ask “Hey Google, what’s my suitcase code”.  To have Google Home remember things for you, you just need to start with “OK Google, remember…”.

Is your smart speaker virtual assistant Alexa or Siri? Just start with “Alexa, remember…” or “Hey Siri, remember…” and away you go. Have your smart speaker remember everything from birthdays to favourite colours, shoe sizes to locker combinations, even where you left that important item you wanted to put in a safe place but can never find again!

11. Easter Eggs

Your smart speaker wants to have fun!

Depending on the smart speaker you have at home, try a few of these:

  • “OK Google, tell me a joke.”
  • “OK Google, what sound does a unicorn make?”
  • “Hey Google, truth or dare?”
  • “OK Google, tell me about Alexa.”
  • “Alexa, party on Wayne.”
  • “Alexa, I want the truth.”
  • “Alexa, are you Skynet?”
  • “Alexa, where is Chuck Norris?”
  • “Hey Siri, mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the fairest of them all?”
  • “Hey Siri, can I name you Jarvis.” Or “Hey Siri, can I call you Jarvis.”
  • “Hey Siri, tell me a riddle.”
  • “Hey Siri, I am your father.”

Have you come across a great Easter egg for your smart speaker? Let us know in the comments below!

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Claudine InnesMake It Mine Recent comment authors
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Make It Mine

Over on the Make It Mine Facebook page Jennifer shared a great Easter egg… “Hey Google, you’re fired!”
LOL Thanks Jennifer! 🙂

We’ve heard this also works with Alexa. Give it a go!

Claudine Innes
Claudine Innes

“Hey Google, self destruct!”

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