How To Use Amazon Alexa As Bluetooth Speaker For Android & Ios Devices
It is truly extraordinary to look at all of the technological marvels that have been brought to us over the past decade. Voice-activated technology, like Alexa, is one of the many technological advancements that seemed like something from a sci-fi movie just a short while ago.
If you are unfamiliar with Alexa, it is a voice-activated virtual assistant (VA) made by Amazon. Alexa's name came from “Alexandria,” an ancient city in Egypt with it's world-famous library.
Now that we know what Alexa is and why it's named "Alexa", I’ll be showing you a quick but comprehensive guide on how you can use Alexa as Bluetooth speakers for both iOS and Android devices.
You see, even though Amazon’s Echo and Echo Plus feature their own built-in speakers, there are other Amazon products, such as Alexa and Echo Dot that are more limited. Therefore, if you truly wish to experience Alexa’s full potential, you’d want to connect it to an iOS or Android device.
Did you know that you can allow your kids to entertain themselves, using their own kid-safe Alexa profile? You can play games, set timers, and play music with Alexa. You can even control your TV with Alexa. Yes, you’re even able to order items from Amazon. Since Alexa is voice-activated, you can accomplish these tasks even when you are in the other room.
The possibilities with Amazon’s Alexa are endless. For this particular guide, we will talk about one possibility in particular – connecting your devices to Amazon’s Alexa as Bluetooth speakers.
How To Use Amazon Alexa As Bluetooth Speaker For Android & iOS Devices
Getting to Know Amazon’s Alexa
First and foremost, you have to understand who Alexa is and what she can do. Moreover, once you understand how everything works, you’ll be able to choose the best way to connect your device to Alexa, whether it is for an Android device or that of an iOS.
Alexa lets you speak your requests and wishes to a pair of speakers and see them fulfilled – it’s like having your own personal genie!
It’s pretty amazing. Before you jump to a number of conclusions, do note that Alexa can only fulfill the simpler requests. You can ask her to dim the lights, set alarms, read you the news, and even play some of your favorite songs. Still, this is a lot.
Amazon’s Alexa and other Echo devices can respond to a particular wake word. In this case, the wake word for Alexa is “Alexa.” Therefore, for any request you have for Alexa, needs to begin with the wake word, for example "Alexa, show me recipes for Eggnog". The microphone takes into account everything you say after the wake word. It beams up to Amazon’s cloud computers for a quick analysis regarding your request.
If you want to listen to music, Alexa will run through either Amazon Prime Music or Amazon's Music Catalog for a particular song, artist, or genre. Now, it is important for you to distinguish two ways of using Alexa – Amazon Alexa speakers and non-Amazon Alexa speakers.
What You Need to Know About Non-Amazon Alexa Speakers
For the sake of having a more cohesive guide, I will first focus on non-Amazon Alexa speakers. With that in mind, other people may prefer to use their own pair of speakers rather than Alexa’s Amazon cousins. Each option may present its own set of pros and cons. Truly, it all depends on what you need.
First things first, should you opt to use your own speakers, you would need two apps. You would need to download the Amazon Alexa app and the branded app of your own speakers. Some may see this as an inconvenience, but honestly, it’s just a small inconvenience.
On another note, you can acquire some of the additional features that the speaker’s app may offer. For example, you can have decent EQ settings, something that the Amazon app doesn’t have. Moreover, there aren’t any third-party speakers that can utilize Amazon’s ESP technology. Thus, Alexa may not respond quickly to your voice prompt.
There are also a number of third-party speakers that may not work well with the music services that are supported by Amazon’s Echo. However, they may work quite well with Spotify or Pandora. Nevertheless, the choice to use third-party speakers is up to you.
How to Pair Your iOS Device with the Amazon Alexa
- Check Amazon Alexa’s Range
Before you do anything, you have to ensure that you and your device are within the range of Amazon’s Alexa. You can easily check this by using Alexa’s wake word and requesting her to turn on Bluetooth connectivity. Since Amazon’s Alexa is voice-activated, you’ll only be able to accomplish this process step if you’re within the range.
- Say “Alexa, Pair”
Now that you have determined that you are within Alexa’s range, say “Alexa, pair” to connect the two devices. It will also put the Amazon Echo device in a Bluetooth pairing mode. You’ll know that Alexa was able to pick up your request when she gives you an audible acknowledgment.
- Wait For Alexa’s Confirmation
Once Alexa gives you an audible acknowledgment that she is searching for any possible pairing, it will only take about a few seconds before your iOS device is recognized. Alexa will confirm that it is ready for pairing.
- Now it's time to open the settings app on iOS
Once opened, browse to the Bluetooth settings. Look for a device that has a small animated circle graphic next to it and contains a reference to your Alexa. This could be something like "Echo", "Alexa", or maybe "Dot". Generally just look for the rotating circle, as it's unlikely that you will be pairing multiple devices at the same time, the one with the graphic is most likely also your Alexa.
- Connect the Two Devices Via Bluetooth
Once Amazon’s Alexa is ready for pairing, your iOS device, whether iPhone or iPad, will notify and ask for your permission to push through with the connection. Don’t worry, you also have the option to cancel any pairing requests. This will come in handy if you have a number of Bluetooth devices under one roof. Should you wish to continue with the pairing, simply tap “Pair.”
- Wait For Alexa’s Confirmation
Again, wait for Alexa’s audible confirmation that your iOS device has confirmed pairing. It will say the name of your iPhone or iPad device, stating that both Amazon’s Alexa and your iOS device are paired. Reconnecting the same iOS device to Amazon’s Alexa will be a lot easier. All you need to do is say “Alexa, connect my phone” to reestablish pairing.
How to Pair Your Android Device with the Amazon Alexa
- Open Your Notifications Drawer
Accessing and connecting your Android device and Amazon’s Alexa may be a bit different from that of your iOS device. With that in mind, you start by swiping down from the top of your Android device’s screen. This will open your notifications drawer.
- Tap the Cog Icon or the Settings Icon
From your notifications drawer, tap the cog icon. It’s situated on the upper right corner of your device’s screen. It will then lead you to the settings menu. On the other hand, you can open your app drawer and simply tap the settings icon.
- Tap Connections From the Settings Menu
Once you enter the settings menu, you have to tap on the connections icon. This will establish your request for a connection. It’s quite similar to when you want your Android device to connect to a particular WiFi network, or in this case, another Bluetooth device.
- Tap Bluetooth
To make your request more specific, tap on the Bluetooth icon. This will be the last step to perform on your Android device.
- Check Amazon Alexa’s Range
Similar to when you are pairing your iOS device to Amazon’s Alexa, start by checking whether you and your Android device are within range. You can accomplish this by saying Alexa’s wake word. If she responds, you’re good to go. If not, relocate to another position closer to Alexa.
- Say “Alexa, Pair”
Now that you have set up your Android device to receive any pairing from the available Bluetooth devices, you can now wake up Alexa. When waking Alexa, you simply say the wake word “Alexa.” In this case, you want your Android device and Alexa to establish a pairing, say “Alexa, pair.”
- Select Your Device From the List of Available Devices
Once Alexa detects your Android device, it will confirm that it’s ready for pairing by saying “Ready to Pair,” then “Connected to Bluetooth.” You can now proceed to find and select your device from the list of available devices.
Here’s a bonus point – this will be the same process steps if you are trying to connect your Android device to any Amazon products like Echo, Echo Dot, Echo Plus, Echo Show, and Echo Spot.
Figuring Out Amazon Alexa Speakers
Even though I did say that I’ll only talk about them, it wouldn’t be fair to at least explain its counterpart. If you want to set up Alexa using its Amazon cousins – Echo, Echo Dot, Echo Plus, or other Amazon devices, you can easily do so. The steps to be followed are quite similar to when you paired your iOS or Android device with Alexa.
Simply download the Alexa app for either iOS or Android by signing in with your account on Amazon. Then, you proceed to plug in your Amazon device into a power outlet. Its ring will light up blue and will eventually turn into an orange color.
On the Alexa app, go to the devices tab and hit the “+” icon. Choose “Add Device Amazon Echo” and your Echo device will connect to a WiFi network, provided that you follow the instructions given on the Alexa app. Once done, you’re all good to go!
Disconnecting Your iOS and Android Device From Amazon’s Alexa
Once you are done, you can easily unpair the two devices, both iOS and Android device to Alexa, by simply saying “Alexa, turn off Bluetooth,” or “Alexa, disconnect from my phone.” Phrases that are quite similar to this request can also work. Since Alexa is an intelligent device, she’ll be able to understand your request.
Reconnecting Your iOS and Android Device From Amazon’s Alexa
Again, you have to ensure that you are within Alexa’s range. Moreover, simply activate Alexa by voice and say “Alexa, connect to my phone.” Be sure that Alexa’s Bluetooth is turned on too. If not, say “Alexa, turn on Bluetooth.”
It can be quite confusing if you have a number of devices that have been initially connected to Amazon’s Alexa. If this is the case, you can easily use your device’s name, whether it is your iPhone’s name or your Android device’s name, you can say “Alexa, connect to [your device’s name].” This can also work with iPads. Once Alexa has successfully confirmed pairing, it will say so.
Setting Up Amazon’s Alexa as Your Default Assistant on Your iOS or Android Device
To set up Alexa as the default assistant on your device, you have to have the Alexa app.
For your Android device, go to Apps, tap the three-dot icon, and choose Default App Assist and Voice Input. In some Android devices, you must choose Device Assistance App. Then, proceed to select Alexa. As you can see, the default assistant would be Google Assistant.
For your iOS device, simply tap the Alexa button once you’ve downloaded the app using your Amazon account. Do note that the Alexa button can be found at the bottom center of the said app. Simply say “Yes” to any permissions asked from you – and you’re done.
Optional Alexa Settings
Once you have paired your iOS and Android devices with Amazon’s Alexa, you can easily open any music app and select a song, playlist, or album that you wish to play. But hey, you’re already using Alexa so why not simply say what you want Alexa to play and she will do it for you. Don’t forget to mention her wake word “Alexa.”
For your iPhone or iPad, you can stream music from Apple Music, Podcasts, iTunes, or even Apple TV. On another note, if you have an Android device, you can opt to utilize other third-party music apps like Spotify, AudioBox, or Pandora.
Since Alexa is a voice-controlled app, you can easily control or ask her to do things by outright saying them. Should you wish to playback, you can say so. Furthermore, you can tell Alexa, an intelligent personal and virtual assistant, to play, pause, stop, increase and decrease the volume, resume, skip, or even head back to the main page or the list of songs on your playlist.
Honestly, Amazon’s Alexa, as well as other voice-activated technologies, are some of the many reasons why it’s good to be alive in this era. Alexa is the perfect companion for when you are cleaning the house, washing the dishes, hanging out with friends, setting up for dinner, and more. It’s a hands-free tool that can help you with just about any minor tasks that you simply need to get done.
Final Thoughts on Amazon’s Alexa
Connecting your mobile device, or any iOS or Android device for that matter, to Amazon’s Alexa provides you with an endless possibility. Do not limit them by simply listening to music; even though a number of consumers have used this amazing invention for it. Nonetheless, once you connect your device to Alexa, you can do so much more. Don't be afraid to test out new commands, and things you're curious about if Alexa can do them.
Since Alexa is a voice-activated technology, you would still need another device to pair it with to accomplish much greater tasks. You can make phone calls – much like those answering machines you see in the 1990s and early 2000s. Plus, you can even opt to leave a message. In this case, connecting Alexa to a mobile device is crucial.
The more common accomplishments of Alexa include requesting your home lights to be turned on or off, locking your doors, switching on or off other smart home devices, and even changing the temperature.
You can talk to Alexa, ask for recipes, play music, set a timer, play games, and so much more. With this gift, it is only right that we utilize it to its full potential. With this guide, you can now do that. See, it’s really easy because these technological inventions should make our lives easier, not more complicated than it already is.