Alexa Goes Hands-Free on Your Mobile Phone

You'll still need to have the Alexa app open and your phone unlocked, though

 Interacting with Amazon's digital assistant on your smartphone just got easier (and safer).

Alexa hands-free screen on Samsung phone
Original image: Geeky

Amazon added a new hands-free option for interacting with its digital assistant, Alexa, on your smartphone. Set to work on either iOS or Android, you're now able to—with your phone unlocked and the Alexa app enabled—use Alexa without tapping the blue button on the screen.

How this helps: There are many situations when you're away from your Echo device at home and want to run a quick Alexa query or request. Apple's Siri, Google Assistant, and Samsung Bixby allow this sort of interaction (on different platforms, of course), which makes them useful in the car or on the go. Now, Amazon users can get the same sweet action.

Some caveats: As TechCrunch notes, the new feature isn't all that just yet. You still have to launch the Alexa app from an unlocked phone. It's possible you can do that via the built-in digital Assistant (Siri, Bixby, or Google Assistant), but once the app is launched, you should be good to go.

Amazon says: "Once the wake word is detected, an animated blue bar will appear at the bottom of the screen, indicating Alexa is streaming your request to the cloud," an Amazon rep told us via email.

Bottom line: When you update your Alexa app to the latest version, you'll have the option to turn on the Hands-Free option. If that doesn't show up, you can try using Amazon's platform-agnostic instructions. It's also possible that the feature hasn't rolled out to you just yet.


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