How to Connect Alexa to Your Computer

Get access to your computer with verbal cues

An Amazon Echo Plus sitting on a kitchen counter, waiting for a command.

Amazon

As of January 2018, one in six Americans own a smart, voice-activated speaker, and Amazon’s Alexa-based products are the most popular of all the options available. Alexa can assist you in countless ways, from reminding you of scheduled tasks, automating your smart home, and more.

Another highly useful way to use your Echo is to connect an Amazon Echo to computers. Once you connect Alexa to computers in your home, you can use it to turn on a computer remotely, interact with your Alexa-enabled device from your computer, or even use your Echo as a computer speaker. Learn how you can start using Alexa for PC in no time. 

Alexa for PC

Alexa for PC
Alexa is coming to many new PC makes and models.  Amazon

Currently, Alexa for PC is only available on supported Windows 10 desktops and notebooks. The app is either preinstalled on the device or offered during the device’s initial setup. 

To find out if Alexa is already installed on your Windows 10 PC, simply type Alexa into the Windows search box. If it doesn’t show up, don’t despair. Acer, Asus, HP, and Lenovo all intend to integrate Alexa for PC into an array of Windows 10 devices. 

If you do have the Alexa app for Windows 10 (or obtain it down the road), you must set it up yourself to begin using it.

  1. Select Start, then select the Alexa on Windows app.
  2. Select Set up Amazon Alexa when the setup screen appears.
  3. Select Continue on the Terms and Conditions screen.
  4. Select the settings you want, then select Finish Setup. If you’re not sure which settings you should choose, don’t worry, as you can change these later.
  5. Select Sign In to sign in to your Amazon account, or Create a New Amazon Account if you don’t have an account yet. 

Tip: After the initial login, Alexa will always be ready on your computer. 

To use Alexa for PC, start by saying the wake word, “Alexa,” followed by a command. Alternatively, select the Alexa on Windows icon to start the app.

Note: Some features available on Echo devices are not supported by Alexa for PC. 

Use Alexa as Your Computer Speaker

If you have an Echo device and your computer is Bluetooth enabled, you can pair them and use your Alexa device as a speaker for your computer. 

Alexa as computer speaker
Alexa as computer speaker.

Pair a Windows PC with an Echo:

  1. Log in to your Alexa account by going to alexa.amazon.com
  2. Select Settings in the left pane.
  3. Choose your Echo in the list of devices. 
  4. Select Bluetooth
  5. Select Pair a New Device; Alexa will search for available devices. 
  6. Go to your computer’s Search box, which may be in the Start menu. 
  7. Type Bluetooth and go to the Bluetooth Settings in System Settings. 
  8. Make sure Bluetooth is on and your computer is discoverable. 
  9. Select Add Bluetooth or Other Device; choose Bluetooth under Device Type.
  10. Select your Echo in the list of devices and select Done. Your computer is now connected to your Echo as a speaker.

Pair an Echo with a Mac:

  1. Log in to your Alexa account by going to alexa.amazon.com
  2. Select Settings in the left pane.
  3. Choose your Echo in the list of devices. 
  4. Select Bluetooth.
  5. Select Pair a New Device; Alexa will search for available devices. 
  6. Select the Bluetooth icon in the menu bar. 
  7. Choose Connect and follow the onscreen instructions to set up the device.
  8. Choose Apple menu, select System Preferences, then Select Sound
  9. Select Output, then choose your Echo in the list of devices. 

Turn on Your PC Using Alexa

While you cannot turn on a powered-down computer with an Alexa-enabled device, you can wake your sleeping or hibernating PC. To do so, you'll need to enable Wake on LAN, set up an IFTTT recipe, and connect Tasker with IFTTT through an SMS, your Android device, and computer.

Turn on Your PC Using Alexa
Turn on Your PC Using Alexa.

Enabling Wake on LAN:

  1. Type Device Manager in the Start search box and press Enter.
  2. Double-click Network Adapters.
  3. Double-click the device name, go to the Power Management tab, then select all the check boxes.
  4. Go to the Advanced tab, select Wait for Link, then select On in the drop-down menu.
  5. Select Wake on Magic Packet, then select Enabled in the drop-down menu.
  6. Select OK.

Create an IFTTT Recipe:

You'll need to use IFTTT to connect Amazon Alexa to Android SMS.

  1. Log in to IFTTT.
  2. Select Search, then enter Alexa trigger pc
  3. Select the Alexa, Trigger PC On applet and enable it.  
  4. Enter the phrase you want to say to turn on your PC; type in your phone number and select Save.

Connect Tasker and IFTTT:

Tasker screenshot
Add a new task in Tasker.

Install the Wake on LAN app and the Tasker app (currently $2.99) onto your Android device. 

  1. Connect your Android phone to the same network as your PC.
  2. Open the Wake on LAN app and click the + in the lower right corner. Choose your computer from the list of devices. 
  3. Open Tasker and go to the Tasks panel. 
  4. Tap the + to add a new task and enter a name for the task.
  5. Tap the + again and choose Plugin. Tap Wake on LAN
  6. Tap Edit and select your computer from the list of devices. 
  7. Go to the Profiles panel, tap the +, then choose Event.
  8. Tap Phone, then Received Text
  9. Tap Search to the right of Sender. Find and select your own contact info. 
  10. Go back to the Profiles panel and tap PC On (Or WoL) from the drop-down list.
  11. Make sure the profile is toggled on and exit Tasker. 

Once you have it all set up, you can say, “Alexa, trigger PC on” to wake your sleeping or hibernating computer.