Your favorite home assistant just got brighter.

By Jessica Bennett
October 31, 2019
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You could ask your Amazon Alexa to turn on the lights. You could tell the smart home assistant to set an alarm. But, until now, you couldn’t do both at the same time. That changed this week with a new set of features that expands the device’s smart lighting capabilities.

Echo Smart Speaker silo on a purple background
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

The new feature allows you to set sleep timers, schedule wake-up lights, and create smart lighting routines. That means you can now arrange your morning wake-up call to include your Alexa-compatible lights. Just say a command like, “Hey Alexa, set an alarm at 8 a.m. tomorrow with my bedroom lights,” and the smart device will flick on the lights at your specified time. If bright overhead lights sound a bit too jarring first thing in the morning, you can even select how long it takes for the lights to reach your desired brightness level.

With this new rollout, you can customize your lighting routine even further by dimming or brightening bulbs at certain times. For example, Alexa can gradually turn down your living room lights every day starting at 9 p.m. to help you wind down before bed. Alternatively, the home assistant can set lights to a timer and automatically shut them off when the clock runs out, which is great for kids (and adults) who have trouble falling asleep in complete darkness.

Previously, you could use Alexa to turn the lights on or off at a specific time, but the feature wasn’t available on the spot through voice commands. You had to program the routine in advance through the app, and you couldn’t attach your lighting preferences to a timer. This new suite of features makes smart-lighting routines much more user-friendly, and all we have to say is: Alexa, thank you.


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