Could Alexa Enhance Your Home Security?

When you’re not at home, Amazon’s Alexa Guard can help keep your home secure. Here’s how to make your smart speaker a home security system.

If you have an Amazon Echo, you may use a handy function called Alexa Guard to safeguard your house. When you choose this option, Alexa will notify you if your Echo detects certain sounds, such as smoke alarms or breaking glass, and you will be able to listen to any detected sounds that raised a red flag.

Alexa Guard can also turn on and off linked smart lighting to make it appear as if someone is at home. While the free version of Alexa Guard cannot contact emergency services in an emergency, Smart Alerts can be delivered to select smart home security system providers, such as Ring and ADT, in the event of an emergency.

Amazon now provides Alexa Guard Plus as an upgrade to the free option. The Plus edition, which costs $4.99 per month or $49 per year after a free 30-day trial, adds hands-free access to an Emergency Helpline, smart warnings about unusual behaviour and other potential emergencies in your house while you’re away, and features geared to stop prospective invaders.

The Amazon Echo, Echo studio, Echo Show, and Echo dot are all compatible with Alexa Guard and Alexa Guard Plus. If you want your Echo to detect the sounds of smoke or carbon monoxide alarms, you’ll need alarms that can process audible signals.

The Echo device must also be placed close enough to the alarm to detect the sound. Amazon suggests placing your Echo and then pushing the test button on your alarm to see if Alexa Guard detects the sound.

Configuration Of Alexa Guard

Before you can enable Alexa Guard, make sure you’ve added at least one Echo device to your account using the Alexa app. Open the app on your device and select More. Go to Settings > Guard > Sound Detection Setup.

Alexa’s protection

If you want Guard to notify you to the sound of a smoke or carbon monoxide alarm, make sure the switches for Smoke & Carbon monoxide Alarm Sounds and Glass Break are turned on. 

Tap OK when the app confirms that all of your supported Echo devices has be selected for sound detection. Guard is already set up and ready for use, according to a confirmation page.

Settings for security

Guard can now be activated in a variety of ways. Tap the Home button in the Alexa guard app’s screen to switch to Away Mode. You can also use your voice by saying”Alexa, I’m leaving,”. Alexa bids you farewell and informs you that Guard has been activated.

If Alexa Guard detects the sound of breaking glass or a smoke or carbon monoxide alarm, a Smart Alert will be sent to your mobile device and smartwatch. You can then listen to the sound by playing the recording. 

Alexa asks you to confirm if you heard glass breaking or an alarm. Select Yes or No. Alexa then inquires if this is an emergency. Answer Yes or No once more. You can also use your Echo to listen for any noise in the nearby area, in case someone has broken in.

Alexa Guard may immediately contact the security company if it detects the sound of shattered glass or alarm tones if you have ADT Pulse, ADT Control, or Ring Alarm security systems.

Alert

If you have a smart bulb or plug attached to a lamp, you may use Alexa Guard to turn the lights on and off to give the impression that someone is at home. Connect and link a suitable smart bulb or plug with your Echo to get started. When you say “Alexa, I’m leaving,” Alexa will turn your lights on and off at random.

Configure Alexa Guard Plus

To sign up for Alexa Guard Plus, open the Alexa app, navigate to Settings > Guard, and then tap the Set up extra Guard features a banner at the top of the page. If your Echo detects motion, it can play the sound of sirens or dogs barking with this premium option. Furthermore, it can immediately summon an emergency helpline to dispatch response professionals to your home.

safeguard plus

Swipe down the screen to learn more about Guard Plus’s features. Select the Learn More option on the Amazon Website for further details on guard plus.

Alexa has been much ahead of the competition in terms of compatible devices since its inception a few years ago, and it’s still not a close battle. The majority of smart security devices on the market are Alexa-enabled, and connecting your security system to an Echo hub adds convenient features and makes interacting with numerous security systems as simple as saying a command.

Installing Smart Home Security

If you want to make Alexa the head of your home security, you’ll need to incorporate an Echo-compatible security system. Scout Alarm and Vivint security systems, for example, function flawlessly with Alexa.

You’ll be able to operate practically every aspect of your alarm system using voice commands once you’ve synced your alarms to your Echo.

There are numerous types of smart security gadgets. Depending on your needs, you might go with a simple alarm system or a whole-home security system that includes various devices. The smart home market is a fast-paced one, with new Alexa-compatible gadgets being produced practically weekly, adding to Alexa’s already amazing variety.

Alarm systems

Alarm systems are the most basic form of home security. When a break-in occurs, these devices use a local mesh network and a number of connected sensors on doors and windows to notify the homeowner (or the authorities).

Smart alarms, like those from Scout or Vivint, make use of skills-level integration, and the command set is large. Many natural language instructions, such as “Send help!” work perfectly. The ability to swiftly verify the status of an alarm before leaving the house distinguishes it from other alarm systems.

When you initiate a command, Alexa’s voice commands are transferred to your alarm system. For example, if you want the command to work, you must say “Alexa, tell Scout to disarm.” Alexa may also have difficulty hearing a command if the alarm is sounding, but the simplicity of voice activation makes it simple to overlook the rare hiccup.

Smart security cameras give an extra layer of protection to your house. They enable you to keep track of unexpected visits using your smartphone or workplace computer, giving you peace of mind when you’re not at home.

Machine learning and human detection are the newest technologies in home security cameras, and Amazon’s Cloud Cam brings both to the table, using the latest AI advancements.

Currently, the Cloud Cam employs motion detection and person detection to record video and deliver notifications anytime it detects motion or a specific individual. Amazon plans to add machine learning to the Cloud Cam with a software upgrade soon, allowing it to automatically evaluate video and assess whether something is a threat. When the update is released, the Cloud Cam should be able to recognize pets.

Smart locks

Smart locks are your home’s first line of protection. The option to lock and unlock the front door with your smartphone is their most convenient feature, which is useful for letting in relatives, friends, or pet sitters when you’re not at home.

Alexa-compatible smart locks are available from August, Schlage, and Kwikset, allowing you to check if your door is locked from anywhere within or outside the house. August smart locks also include an activity feed, which you can browse and monitor with Alexa.

Thermostats and smart light bulbs

When the lights are turned on, burglars are significantly less inclined to try a break-in. Alexa-enabled light bulbs like Philips and BeON can supplement your home security system by replicating your lighting habits while you’re away, repelling would-be burglars. When something goes bump in the night, simply saying “Alexa, turn on the lights!” brings instant confidence.

Smart thermostats can protect your home from various dangers, such as a fire or a gas leak. Nest, Ecobee, and Honeywell all make Alexa-compatible products which makes temperature control more convenient

Show your security camera using Alexa 

“Alexa, show [camera name]” is the command to view the feed. The name of the camera is the one you’ve specified in the Alexa app. It will use the name from the camera’s parent app by default, but you can alter it.

If you’ve connected an Echo speaker to a Fire TV device, you can use the command to watch the feed on your TV (or speak through the remote control). Simply say, “Alexa, conceal [camera name],” to cease watching.

“Alexa, stop,” “Alexa, go home,” “Alexa, show the home screen,” or “Alexa, display the clock” are all commands that can be sent to the virtual assistant (on a Show or Spot).

You can also return to the previous screen by pressing the back button on a Fire TV remote or the Echo screen.

Conclusion

Security gadgets and Amazon’s Echo and Alexa ecosystem will improve when machine learning and AI as a whole improve. Recent updates will add even more security and convenience. So, whether you’re just getting started with smart home security or searching for ways to expand it, Alexa will have the capabilities and devices you need.

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