How to Ask Alexa: “Read My Emails”

She can read a full email, reply to it, archive it, or delete it for you

Why manually log in to your email when you can ask Alexa to read, archive, delete, or even reply to emails for you? This article explains how to read email on an Echo Show, Echo Dot, or any other Alexa-compatible device.

This feature only works with Gmail and a few Microsoft email accounts.

How to Link Alexa to Your Email Account

Before Alexa can read your emails, you must link your email account with Amazon Alexa:

  1. Open the Alexa mobile app and tap More in the lower-right corner.

  2. Tap Settings.

  3. Tap Calendar & Email under the Alexa Preferences section.

    More, Settings, and Calendar & Email
  4. Select your email provider (Google or Microsoft).

  5. Tap Yes, That's Me to confirm the account owner, or tap I'm Someone Else and choose your profile name.

  6. Make sure the Email switch is enabled, then tap Next. The switch should be solid blue with a dark blue dot.

    Google and Microsoft, Yes, Thats Me, and Email switch in the Alexa app

    Disable the Calendar switch unless you want to connect your calendar to Alexa as well.

  7. A web browser will open, and you will have to log in to your email account. You will then be prompted to give a variety of email account access approvals to Alexa. Tap Allow.

    This approval lets Alexa read, compose, send, and permanently delete emails from your account. If you tap Deny, these features will not work.

  8. When you get to the Account Added screen, tap the X in the upper-left corner.

  9. Tap Continue to set up Alexa voice recognition, or tap Maybe Later.

    Allow, X, and Continue in the Alexa app settings
  10. To manage your connected email accounts, go back to More > Settings > Calendar & Email, then tap Accounts.

  11. Tap your email under Linked Accounts.

  12. From this screen, you can unlink the account or connect a calendar. Tap the Signature switch to add Sent via Alexa to your emails.

    Accounts, Linked Account, and the Signature Switch in the Alexa App Settings

How to Ask Alexa to Read Your Email

Use your Alexa device (such as an Amazon Echo) or the Alexa smartphone app to check your emails with the following voice command:

  • “Alexa, read my email.”

Alexa will tell you how many unread emails are in your inbox from the last day as well as how many emails are remaining and marked as important. Starting with the most recent message first, she will read the sender and subject line, then ask if you want her to read the full email, delete it, or move on to the next unread email.

You can tell Alexa to archive your email message, even though she doesn't specifically give you that option. Just say, “Alexa, archive it.”

Can Alexa Send Emails?

Alexa cannot compose brand-new emails for you. She can only reply to received emails in your inbox. If you would like to reply to an email, just say, “Reply.”

You will have the option to compose a verbal email, then Alexa will ask if you would like to send the reply. If you say yes, she will send the email for you and include the Sent via Alexa signature tag (if you opted to set that up).

Be thoughtful but quick with your replies. Alexa won't wait long for responses, and you will need to speak very clearly.

How to Stop Alexa From Reading

After Alexa announces what's in your inbox, you can tell her to stop after she has asked whether you want your first email read or deleted. An easy command for this is “Alexa, stop.”

It's a little trickier to stop her once she has started reading the emails for you. If you decide part of the way through an email or group of emails that you want Alexa to stop reading them, you must wait until she finishes reading the current email before you can give a verbal command. If using the Alexa app, you can tap the X on the screen to make her stop.

If you accidentally delete an email, you can still manually retrieve it from your email trash can. Your email provider's retrieval time limits will apply.

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