Anyone living with housemates or children knows the frustration of yelling to get someone’s attention across the house. Fortunately, we live in the 21st century, and with Alexa devices, that’s no longer a problem. Before we get too far, you need at least two Alexa devices in your home to use Alexa as an intercom. If you want another Alexa device to use as an intercom, you can also set them up as speakers to have music throughout your house.
We will be using Drop In, available on Echo devices, including the dot, show, and spot devices. Alexa devices make searching for things on the web and all tech processes more accessible, and Drop In is no different. In addition, Drop In makes it a lot easier to communicate throughout your house for people who are hard of hearing or have mobility issues.
So without further ado, let’s learn how to use Alexa as an intercom in 6 steps.
1. Open Alexa App
2. Tap on Devices
Now that you are in the Alexa app tap on Devices on the bottom toolbar. Then select the Echo device you want to use Drop In on.
After selecting the Echo device, you want to use tap on the Settings cog wheel in the top right-hand corner.
4. Select Communications
Scroll down the settings page until you reach Communications. It should be under General. Once you find it tap on Communications.
5. Tap Drop In
On the Communications page, you should see Drop In at the bottom of the page.
6. Turn On Drop In
Drop In gives you three options On, My Household, and Off. Switching Drop In to On will make it so permitted contacts can drop in on your Echo device anytime.
Changing Drop In to My Household will act the same as On, but instead of any permitted contact, it will only be other Echo devices in your household. If you are using this as a house intercom, we recommend using this setting.
Naturally, Off turns off this feature, and no one will be able to drop in on your Echo device regardless of their status.
How To Talk With Other Alexa Devices
Now that you have Drop In turned on, all that’s left to do is use it as an intercom. The voice command to use Drop In is “Alexa, drop in on (the name of the Echo device you want to drop in on).” Note that you will need to know the name of the other Echo devices to Drop In. We recommend renaming your devices to something easier to remember if they are not already. For example, if an Echo device is in someone’s room, rename that device to that person’s name instead of something like “Bedroom 3.”
After you say the command, your Echo device will find and connect to the other device. The person on the other side will hear a chime, and their Alexa device light will glow green. Now you can talk between those two devices, and when you are done say, “Alexa, end drop in.”
For example, if you want to make a house-wide announcement as a dinner call. You can say, “Alexa, announce.” This will essentially drop in on every Echo device that has Drop In enabled in your household.
Check out the following video by GeekWire to see how easy it is to use Alexa as an Intercom.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©Raysonho @ Open Grid Scheduler / Scalable Grid Engine, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons.