If you have an iOS or Android device, you can now send text messages and phone calls through Alexa. This new feature also will work with Fire tablets and will make it a lot easier if you need to text or call someone. For a long time now, the Amazon Echo devices have had the ability to talk to one another. That included using commands such as “Call mom at work” but now, the tablets are all going to get this functionality. If you have the Alexa app, read on to learn more about what this new messaging and calling capability can help you do.
Alexa Now Has Call & Message Abilities on iOS & Android
The best news here is that you are able to now send messages and make phone calls using Alexa on your iOS or Android tablet. If you still have a landline, this is going to be a sure way to get you away from your home phone and even off of your cell phone. Once you have the app installed on your iOS or Android device, using simple voice commands can allow you to call or text. Before Alexa can make phone calls or text people, you will need to allow permissions to get into and access your Contacts. For most people, this is a simple request, although some people might hesitate to grant these permissions.
If the person you are calling has a device that has a screen, you also could choose to make video calls. This means that the regular Echo speaker could not make these video calls but the Echo Spot would be able to make video calls. The best part about all of this is that it is done through Wi-Fi, which means you will not have to pay extra to use any of the new features in the Alexa app. While this is all good news for the Alexa app, there are a couple drawbacks and limitations we need to tell you about.
Alexa App Limitations Include Owning Device with Alexa
When it comes to the limitations of this new feature on the app, the biggest drawback is that this is an Alexa-to-Alexa ability right now. This means that the person who you are messaging or trying to call has to also have Alexa installed on their iOS or Android device. This could be either a smartphone with the Alexa app already installed or having a device such as the Echo Dot. If the person you are trying to contact does not have Alexa installed in some form, this new feature will not work.
Also, there are other limitations such as needing to have an Echo if you would like to call mobile or landline numbers. Canada, Mexico, and the United States are currently the only countries that have this new feature available as well. So if you are trying to just use your iPad to call someone, it likely will not work as of yet since you still need to have the Echo device to begin. For some people, this might be more of a hassle than it is worth, but other people will love taking advantage of the new feature.
Alexa App Features More than Just Calling
There is another feature we wanted to tell you about on this app as well, which is called Drop-In. This new feature will be available on all tablets, including iOS and Android. You also can use this feature if you have an Amazon Fire tablet. With this feature, if you are one of the people on the pre-approved contacts list, you will be able to connect either through a video call or audio call.
You will be able to do this right from your tablet with this new Drop-In feature. The new features are available right now through the Alexa app. If you have the Connect hub, you will be able to use all of these new features as well. Tell us in the comments what you think of this news. Are you excited that you can do everything over Wi-Fi and not waste your data?