How to Use Alexa With Your iPhone

Shh! Don't tell Siri

What to Know

  • Download the Alexa app from the App Store, open it, and follow the prompts to set it up.
  • Tap Communicate to make calls or announcements or use Drop-In. Tap Play to read Kindle books and listen to streaming music.
  • Tap the Devices tab to add and manage devices. Tap the keyboard to issue Alexa commands via text.

This article explains how to download the Amazon Alexa app to an iPhone with iOS 11 and later and use Alexa as a virtual assistant by issuing voice and text commands.

How to Download Alexa on an iPhone

It's easy to download and install the Amazon Alexa app on your iPhone.

  1. Open the App Store on your iPhone and tap Search from the bottom menu.

  2. Type Alexa into the search bar and tap Search.

  3. On the Amazon Alexa app, tap Get.

    Download the Alexa app to your iPhone

    Or tap the download button (cloud with downward arrow) if you previously had and deleted the app.

  4. Tap Install > Open to launch the app. You're ready to use your Alexa app.

    Tap Install > Open to launch the app. You're ready to use your Alexa app.

How to Set up Alexa on Your iPhone

After you download and open Alexa, it's time to set up the app.

  1. Tap OK to give Alexa permission to access Bluetooth.

  2. Sign in to the app using your Amazon account, or create a new Amazon account if you don't have one.

  3. Confirm the name attached to your login credentials.

    Allow Bluetooth, sign in to your Amazon Account, and confirm your credentials.
  4. Tap Allow to let Amazon access your contact information and send you notifications, or tap Later to set this up another time.

  5. Tap OK to confirm contact access and then tap Allow to confirm notification permissions.

    Give Alexa permission to access your contacts and notifications
  6. You're taken to the app's home screen. Select Tap to talk to Alexa to set up voice controls.

  7. Tap Turn On to talk to Alexa on the go.

  8. Tap OK to allow Alexa to access the microphone.

    Tap to talk to Alexa, then turn on mobile and microphone access.
  9. To allow Alexa to use your location, tap Allow Once or Allow While Using App. Tap Don't Allow if you want to deny access.

  10. Test the Alexa voice assistant. The app suggests you ask, "Where's the nearest swimming pool?" It then presents some answers.

    Test the Alexa voice assistant with a question.

How to Use Alexa for iPhone

The Alexa app's home screen offers more ways to help you get the most out of the digital assistant.

  1. Tap the Communicate tab to make calls to someone on your Contacts list, send photos to Alexa devices, use the Drop-In feature, or make an announcement using compatible Echo devices.

    Tap the Communicate tab to make calls to someone on your Contacts list, send photos to Alexa devices, use the Drop-In feature, or make an announcement via compatible Echo devices.
  2. Tap the Play tab to read Kindle books and listen to streaming music from services like Apple Music, Spotify, and Pandora.

    Tap Play to read Kindle books and listen to streaming music from services like Apple Music, Spotify, and Pandora.
  3. Tap the Devices tab to add and manage Echo devices connected to your account. Tap All Devices for a complete list of connected Echo, Fire Tablet, Fire Stick, and other devices.

    Tap the Devices tab to add and manage Echo devices connected to your account. Tap All Devices for a complete list of connected Echos, Fire Tablets, Fire Sticks, and more.
  4. To add a device, go to the upper-right corner and tap the plus sign.

  5. Select Add Device.

  6. Find the hardware you want to add. Either browse brands or select the type of device from the list.

    Add a device to the Amazon Alexa app on your iPhone
  7. Follow the on-screen prompts to finish setting up the device. The instructions will be different depending on what you're connecting.

How to Text Amazon Alexa From Your iPhone

If you want to use Alexa to make a call, order a product, or ask a question, and you don't want to use your voice, communicate with Alexa using text. This is helpful if you're in a crowded room or don't want to wake someone nearby. Here's how it works:

  1. Open the Amazon Alexa app and tap the keyboard in the upper-left corner of the screen.

  2. Type a query, tap Send, and Alexa responds in a text.

    Type a query, tap Send, and Alexa will respond via text.
  3. Or, use text to ask Alexa to call someone on your Contacts list, then tap Send. Alexa places a call to your contact.

    Use text to ask Alexa to call someone on your Contacts list, then tap Send. Alexa will place a call to your contact.
  4. Or, use text to ask Alexa to add something to your to-do list, and tap Send. Alexa confirms the item was added.

    use text to ask Alexa to add something to your to-do list, and tap Send. Alexa will confirm the item has been added.

    You can also ask Alexa in a text to control a smart gadget in your home, such as an Echo Show or a smart lightbulb.

How to Make Amazon Purchases With Alexa

Using Alexa on the iPhone is much like using Siri. However, one central function distinguishes Amazon's assistant from Apple's: you can use Alexa to order items on Amazon.

To use Alexa for Amazon orders, you must have an Amazon Prime subscription and set up 1-Click ordering.

  1. From the Alexa app's home screen, tap More (three lines) in the lower-right corner.

  2. Tap Settings.

  3. Tap Account Settings.

    Tap More, Settings, and Account Settings
  4. Tap Voice Purchasing and then toggle on Voice Purchasing.

    Tap Voice Purchasing and then toggle on Voice Purchasing.
  5. Next to Purchase Confirmation, tap Enable. You're taken to a screen where you can set up security measures.

  6. Tap Voice Profile to set up a unique voice profile. To protect your purchases by using a unique numeric voice code, tap Voice Code, enter a four-digit number, and tap Save.

    Set up purchase confirmation security measures for Voice Purchasing
  7. With Voice Purchasing enabled, place an order by tapping the Alexa icon on the home screen and saying something like, "Alexa, order Kellogg's Rice Krispies Treats." Alexa searches Amazon, tells you what's available, and asks if you want to buy the item now or add it to your cart.

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