How to Use a Fire Tablet With Alexa

Enable voice assistance on your Kindle Fire

Man using a Fire tablet at the Amazon store in Seattle, WA.

Stephen Brashear/Getty Images.

Want to use your Kindle Fire tablet with Alexa? Amazon's voice assistant app is compatible with 4th generation Fire tablets and later. If you have an Amazon Fire HD 6, Fire 7, Fire 8, or Fire HD 10 tablet, setting up voice assistance is as easy as downloading an app.

These instructions apply to the standard, HD, and HDX models of the Amazon Fire family.

How to Tell Which Fire Tablet You Have

You can see which generation Fire tablet you have by going to Settings > Device Options and looking under Device Model.

Your Fire tablet's generation refers to the year it was made. The first generation of the Kindle Fire came out in 2011, so Fire tablets made in 2018 are part of the eighth generation. The number in your tablet's name (e.g. Fire 7 or Fire HD 10) refers to the screen size.

The 4th generation began with the release of the Fire 6 HD in 2014, which is when the Kindle Fire was officially re-branded as simply Fire. All Fire tablets made since then include support for the Alexa Voice Assistant, but newer models support more features than older ones.

If you have an older Kindle Fire, you can still download the Alexa app, but you'll be unable to use it.

How to Enable Alexa on Your Fire Tablet

  1. From your Home screen, swipe right until you get to the Apps page, then search for "Alexa."

  2. Download the Amazon Alexa app.

    The Alexa app in the Google Play Store
  3. After it automatically installs, tap Amazon Alexa on your Home screen to launch it.

    Tap the Amazon Alexa icon on your Home screen.
  4. Enter your name and tap Continue.

  5. Set up phone verification by entering your phone number and confirming the code sent to you.

    Alternatively, you can tap SKIP and set up phone verification later; just tap the speech bubble at the bottom of the Alexa app home screen.

  6. After a brief tutorial, you can start making the most of Amazon's voice assistant.

How to Use Your Fire Tablet With Alexa

To control Alexa with your voice, hold down the Home icon (the circle at the bottom-center of your screen) and wait for a blue line to appear. You can then give a command or ask a question.

Hold down the Home button, wait for a blue line to appear, then give a command or ask a question.

If you have parental controls enabled, Alexa will be disabled by default. Alexa is unavailable on child profiles, secondary adult profiles, and Fire Kid's Edition tablets.

What Can Alexa Do on Fire?

With Alexa enabled, you can now do all of the following using voice commands:

  • Watch Flash Briefings
  • Watch videos on Amazon Prime Video
  • View photos from your Prime Photos account
  • Set an alarm or timer
  • Schedule and view upcoming events
  • Create a shopping list
  • Make video calls

Most Alexa actions require your device to be connected to a Wi-Fi network. Some features are not supported in every country.

From the Alexa app home screen, you can tap the hamburger menu in the upper left corner to open the options menu. From there, tap Things to Try, then tap a topic to learn how Alexa can help. To discover new Alexa skills, tap Skills & Games or simply say, “Alexa, suggest new skills.”

Tap the hamburger menu in the upper left corner of the Home screen to open the options menu.

Sometimes Alexa will respond with visual information. To dismiss these visuals, just tap the back icon.

Use Alexa on Fire HD 10 Hands-Free

The Fire HD 10 introduced completely hands-free functionality. This addition effectively turns any Fire tablet into an Amazon Echo Show smart speaker. A Fire OS software update also brought full hands-free support to all 7th generation tablets, but older models still only offer limited voice assistance.

To use Alexa without touching the Fire's screen:

  1. Tap the gear icon on your Home screen to open the Settings.

  2. Tap Alexa under the Device section.

  3. Tap Hands-Free Mode if it's not already enabled.

  4. Say “Alexa,” wait for the activation sound, then ask a question or give a command.

  5. Your Fire tablet can now do everything the Amazon Echo Show and Echo Spot can do, and more. If you have the Show Mode Charging Dock, your tablet will automatically switch to voice-operated mode when placed on the charging stand.

Use Alexa to Read Your Kindle Books

If you have Audible audiobooks, you can listen to them by simply saying, "Alexa, play the audiobook" followed by the title.

Alexa can also read your books aloud if you don't have an Audible account. To have Alexa read to you in her digitized voice, just say, "Alexa, play the Kindle book" followed by the title.

You can then ask Alexa to pause, resume, or stop your Kindle book. Examples of other commands you can use include:

  • "Alexa, read louder."
  • "Alexa, stop reading in 30 minutes."
  • "Alexa, next chapter."

Use Alexa in Show Mode

To turn on Show Mode, simply say “Alexa, turn on Show Mode.” Alternatively, you can toggle Show Mode on and off from the quick action menu.

Show Mode is only available for 7th and 8th Generation Fire HD 8 and Fire HD 10 tablets.

Enabling Show Mode makes it easier to control your device from afar with voice commands. When Show Mode is active, text appears larger, bolder, and formatted for reading at a distance. Your device will also suggest actions Alexa can perform while in Show Mode, making it handy for learning what the voice assistant can do for you.

Troubleshooting Alexa on the Fire Tablet

Alexa can get confused if you ask her to do something while using your Fire tablet manually. For example, if you ask Alexa to play an Audible audiobook, then you try to stop it using the Audible app, your book might start playing again from the beginning. As a general rule, any time you start an action using Alexa, you should stop the action using Alexa.

To make Alexa stop any action, simply say, "Alexa, stop." Alternatively, you can force Alexa to stop by swiping down to open the Quick Action menu, then tap the play/pause icon. You can also toggle Alexa on and off by going to Settings > Alexa.