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Alexa, Siri, and Google Don’t Understand a Word You Say

Amazon Voice assistants like Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri have come a long way in the last few years. But, for all their improvements, one thing holds them back: They don’t understand you. They rely too much on specific voice commands. Speech Recognition is Just a Magic Trick
Tags: Google, Amazon, Crafts, Ge, Nsa, Siri, Geneva, Voice Assistants, Alexa, Alexa Google, Google Home, Alexa Siri, Amazon Voice, Magic Trick Amazon Voice, Geneva Alexa


Where are all the must-have Alexa skills?

Is it me or is Amazon's Alexa loaded with nothing but gimmicky skills? I like audio news streams as much as the next guy but where are all the amazing skills this platform should be offering by now? I wrote earlier about a use-case publishers and content consumers could get excited about but the capabilities I outlined then are still nowhere to be found. My various Alexa devices are great at streaming music. The Echo Show I got for Christmas sits on my nightstand and randomly shows photos from m...
Tags: Amazon, Books, Alexa, Joe Wikert


How to Name Your Smarthome Devices for Better Voice Control

Smarthomes still aren’t very smart, and voice assistants don’t truly understand you. Beyond using groups, you should name your devices carefully to avoid overlap, hard to remember names, and confusion—both for you and your voice assistant. Similar Device Names Introduces Command Confusion Have you ever asked Alexa or Google to turn off the living room light, only to get asked repeatedly which living room device you want off? You can try to enunciate better or be more specific, just to be left...
Tags: Google, Amazon, Crafts, Alexa, Better Voice Control


How to Fix an Echo or Google Home That Won’t Connect to WiFi

Congratulations, you have a new Google Home or Amazon Echo device! But for some reason, even though you’re confident you have the password correct, it won’t connect to Wi-Fi. The good news is, there are easy solutions to try. Whether you have a new Google Home or new Amazon Echo device, setup should be easy. As long as you have the correct accounts created, the apps walk you through all the steps in a straightforward manner. But occasionally you might get hung up on connecting to Wi-Fi, even wh...
Tags: Google, Amazon, Crafts, Amazon Echo, Alexa, Google Home


Woot Is Selling Refurbished Amazon Products for More Than 50% Off

Have you been waiting for the perfect opportunity to buy an Amazon smart device? Well, the wait is over. Woot is selling Amazon products at a ridiculous discount. Online retailers will usually sell refurbished devices at a moderate discount. Maybe $20 or $30, nothing too crazy. But right now, Woot is selling refurbished Amazon devices for more than 50 percent off, just in time for Valentine’s day. Here are Woot’s discounted Amazon products: Echo Connect Black – $15 $35 Amazon Echo (1st Generat...
Tags: Amazon, Crafts, Amazon Echo, Alexa, Valentine, Amazon Echos


Editors’ Picks: Our 2019 Valentine’s Day Gift Guide

On our collective Valentine’s Day wish list: Above: Justine is eying this Rose Mohair Throw, woven in the U.K., because “it has just the right amount of pink”; $297 at Alder & Co. Above: “I’ve long admired these Love Letter Napkins from Sir/Madam,” says Annie. “I’m partial to their subtle, non-obvious, sometimes cheeky romance, in neat black type. Rather than use them on the table, I’d frame one, or a pair.” Shown are letters, hand-screened onto cotton napkins, by Virginia Wool...
Tags: Books, New York, San Francisco, Valentine's Day, Editors' Picks, Annie, Pink, Gift Guides, Virginia Woolf, Alexa, Romantic, Michelle, Julie, Justine, Margot, Pienza


Want Better Smarthome Voice Control? Use Groups

Breadmaker/Shutterstock If your Google Home or Amazon Echo has trouble controlling multiple lights or devices in a room, you probably haven’t set up groups correctly. Giving each item a unique name and then grouping those items makes your Voice Assistant work better. Naming Devices Quickly Becomes Complicated A smart bulb is one of the most natural things to add to a growing smarthome. You need light bulbs, and these are incredibly easy to install, requiring no wiring on your part. But y...
Tags: Google, Crafts, Amazon Echo, Alexa, Amazon Alexa, Google Home, Smarthome Voice Control


Deal Alert: Get a Ring Alarm System and an Echo Dot for Just $159

If you’ve been in the market for a security system, now might be the time to jump in, because you can grab a five-piece Ring Alarm system and a 3rd-generation Echo Dot for just $159, which is pretty bonkers. The five-piece set, which includes the base station, keypad, one door/window sensor, one motion sensor, and a range extender, normally sells for $200 by itself. So not only are you getting $40 off the alarm system, but you’re also getting a free Echo Dot, which is normally priced at $49. Wi...
Tags: Crafts, Alexa


Editors’ Picks: Our 10 Favorite Wheeled Carry-On Luggage Picks

This week’s Jetsetter issue has us all packing our bags for a trip to the sun. Here are our favorite carry-on pieces of luggage for speedy, check-in-free travel. Above: Both Christine and Francesca are Rimowa devotees: “An architect friend introduced me to the line (very expensive but worth the investment,” Francesca says. “We were traveling in Italy and all was fine until we got to Venice; there I was, lugging my duffle bag as she glided along with her Rimowa. I’ve been a convert ever since....
Tags: Amazon, Books, Sweden, Bali, Navy, US, Italy, Venice, Annie, Meredith, Sarah, Alexa, Eagle Creek, Christine, Kristina, Filson


Deal Alert: Grab an Echo Show and a Philips Hue Bulb for $180

Managing your smart home can be difficult, especially if you live with other people. But things would be easier if you had a smart home hub, like Amazon’s Echo Show. We’ve spent a lot of time talking about smart hubs, and it’s clear that the best smart hubs are capable of doing unique things. They can expand the way we think about smart tech, and we want them in every room of our house. The Echo Show is one of those products. It’s a fine smart hub, but it’s also a wireless speaker, a countertop...
Tags: Amazon, Crafts, Philips, Amazon Echo, Alexa, Amazon Alexa, Amazon Echo Show


Audible Releases Choose Your Own Adventure Books as Alexa Skills

CYOA Choose Your Own Adventure-style books are a staple of youth reading that brought heroic wins and tragic endings to many children. Now you can listen to your choice play out with new Amazon skills from Audible. If you grew up reading Choose Your Own Adventure style books from Chooseco, you’d distinctly remember keeping your thumb and index finger on previous pages in case you made the wrong choice (again). Simple and straight forward stories would frequently pause and present you with t...
Tags: Amazon, Crafts, Alexa, Alexa Skills, Chooseco


Deal Alert: A Bunch of Anker Accessories are Cheap on Amazon Today

Need a new cable or charger? Amazon has a handful of Anker accessories on sale for today only, including cables, wall chargers, car chargers, battery packs, and more. You can grab a six-foot USB-C cable for just under $10, or go with a 10,000mAh battery pack for $26. They even have the Alexa-enabled Roav Viva car charger for $55, which puts Alexa right in your car. If wireless charging is your thing, you can grab a 10W wireless charging pad for $17, which isn’t a bad price at all. Although if y...
Tags: Amazon, Crafts, Anker, Alexa, Amazon Today


Common Smarthome Myths That Just Aren’t True

Alexander Supertramp/Shutterstock Smarthome technology has come a long way. It still isn’t for everyone, but some of the common myths people use to avoid smarthome tech aren’t true. Smarthomes don’t have to be expensive, and they aren’t always listening to you, for example. Myth: Smarthomes are Expensive Dariusz Jarzabek/Shutterstock Smarthomes can be expensive—especially if you go for a custom build designed specifically for your home. But they don’t have to be expensive. It’s eas...
Tags: Google, Amazon, Crafts, Voice, Alexa, Voice Assistant, Smarthome, Google Home, Alexander Supertramp Shutterstock Smarthome, Dariusz Jarzabek Shutterstock Smarthomes


I Used a Cortana Smart Speaker All Weekend. Here’s Why It Failed

I spent days using Cortana instead of Alexa or Google Assistant and the experience left me feeling as rough around the edges as Cortana does. Unfortunately, Microsoft has fallen so far behind that the only reasonable solution is to give up. Satya says Goodbye to Cortana Speakers Recently, Satya Nadella, the CEO of Microsoft, has said he no longer sees Cortana as a competitor to Alexa or Google Assistant. According to MSPoweruser, he stated: “You should be able to use it on Google Assistant, y...
Tags: Google, Crafts, Microsoft, Satya Nadella, Cortana, Philips, Alexa, Satya


Deal Alert: Arlo Pro 2-Camera Kit At All-Time Low

Arlo Arlo’s highly-rated and versatile Pro camera system is particularly affordable today with the 2-camera starter kit at an all-time historical low. Now’s the time to snatch up a great camera system for nearly 50% off the original price. While the most current version of the Arlo platform is the Arlo Pro 2 (which builds on the Pro cameras by upping the resolution from 720p to 1080p, widening the field of view, and integrating some software features like enhanced activity zones), the Arlo ...
Tags: Google, Amazon, Crafts, Alexa, Time Low, Google Home Hub, Arlo Arlo


Deal Alert: The 16GB Amazon Fire HD 8 is Back Down to Just $50

Still kicking yourself for missing a good Fire tablet deal over the holidays? Well, here’s your chance at redemption. Right now, Amazon is selling its new 16GB Fire HD 8 for just $50. That’s about $30 less than retail. This tablet comes with “special offers”—unobtrusive advertisements on the lock screen. If you don’t want the ads, then you’ll be happy to know that Amazon’s also offering the ad-free 16GB Fire HD 8 for a discounted $65. You’re probably well aware that these tablets are great for ...
Tags: Amazon, Crafts, Alexa, Right now Amazon


Three Ways to Improve Your Smarthome

The initial appeal of smarthome devices can be one of intrigue. Furthermore, these products can do a lot more than you might think from first glance. RELATED: How to Put Together Your First Smarthome (Without Getting Overwhelmed) When most people think of how you control smarthome devices and what you can do with them, they most likely envision the ability to control things from their smartphones or using their voice with Alexa or Google Assistant. All of this is true, and it’s certainly the ba...
Tags: Google, Crafts, Alexa, Real Smarthome Superpower Read


Deal Alert: Grab an Insignia 39″ Smart TV For $149.99

TV’s are getting cheaper and cheaper, but you shouldn’t grab the smallest, cheapest TV that you can find. If you’ve been waiting for a great TV deal, now’s your chance to buy an Insignia 39″ smart TV for just $149.99. Whether you’re trying to replace your old TVs or add some new TVs to your home, the Insignia 39″ smart TV is a great option. It’ has Amazon Fire and Alexa capabilities, so you can stream your favorite episodes of ‘Tidying Up’ without touching a remote. And since the Insignia is a ...
Tags: Crafts, Best, Alexa, Amazon Fire


Cortana Pulls an About Face, Opts to Integrate with Alexa and Google Assistant Instead

Microsoft’s Cortana voice assistant has struggled to stay relevant, and it looks like it’s reached its last brick wall. Cortana will no longer compete with other voice assistants, but will instead be available as an Alexa Skill, as well as work with Google Assistant at some point. The company’s CEO, Satya Nadella, admitted during an event earlier this week that Cortana hasn’t been able to compete well with Alexa and Google Assistant, but said that it’s still a core feature for its customers, mo...
Tags: Google, Amazon, Crafts, Microsoft, Satya Nadella, Cortana, Skype, Alexa, Nadella, Alexa Skill, Cortana Nadella


The Best Smarthome Products We Saw at CES 2019

Every year, CES is chock full of smarthome tech. So much so that there’s even an entire dedicated space on the show floor to just smarthome companies. Here are the best new smarthome devices we saw at CES this year. Voice Assistant Smart Switches Many new products we saw on the show floor weren’t necessarily “new” or revolutionary, but rather many companies have come out with their own versions from young product categories, and that includes smart switches with built-in voice assistants. Th...
Tags: Google, Crafts, Lenovo, Home Hub, Alexa, Leviton, Lenovo Smart Clock, Decora Voice


The Best Smart Locks for Your Amazon Echo

A smart lock for your front door is a great way to add some convenience to your daily routine, and if you want to be able to control it with your voice using your Echo, there are a couple of good options that work great with Alexa. Keep in mind that there are different smart locks to choose from that come with different features, so the “best” one for you may be different than the “best” one for someone else. With that said, we’ll go over a few different locks that come with various features. ...
Tags: Crafts, Amazon Echo, Alexa, Kevo, Alexa Keep


Electronic Invasion of Privacy

Art by Michael Ramirez Electronic Invasion of Privacy USA –-(Ammoland.com)- Electronic Invasion of Privacy. Apparently, big brother is not the only one watching, say hello to big Google, big FB, big Alexa, big refrigerator, big microwave and on and on. Did you enjoy this cartoon? Sign up for Ammoland in your Inbox and get our daily cartoon and email news! You call yourself pro-gun? Prove it by joining any one or all of these fine civil rights organizations: National Rifle Association (N...
Tags: Google, Guns, America, Alexa, Nra, Michael Ramirez, National Rifle Association NRA, Ammoland, Gun Rights News, Gun Cartoons, Citizens Committee, Invasion of Privacy, Electronic Invasion of Privacy USA Ammoland


Report from Sweden: Introducing Arket (the Next Muji?)

I’m just back from a cold, dark, magical New Years week in Stockholm. What to do when it’s 28 degrees out and there are there’s just about six hours of sunlight? Do as the Swedes do: bundle up, go for a brisk walk, then hunker down inside and implement the Swedish knack for brightening the home in midwinter. Among the lagom ideas I’m taking back with me: candles on every surface to combat the January dark, remembering what it’s like to be quiet (no incessant background music in restaurants; calm...
Tags: Europe, Books, UK, Budget, Sweden, Portugal, Ikea, Airbnb, Candles, Stockholm, Alexa, Swedish, Muji, Scandinavian, Södermalm, Shopper's Diary


Lenovo Unveils Google Assistant Smart Clock and Alexa Tablet with Dock

At CES 2019, Lenovo has introduced two new smarthome products: the Smart Clock with Google Assistant and the Smart Tab with Alexa. The former is sort of a mini version of the company’s existing Smart Display, while the latter is a tablet and Echo Show in one. The Smart Clock has a 4-inch display and is meant to be a bedside clock for your nightstand. You can use it to set alarms, play music, look at your calendar appointments for the day, and even use it with Google Assistant’s Routines feature...
Tags: Google, Crafts, Lenovo, Home Hub, Alexa, Lenovo Smart Clock, Lenovo Unveils Google, Alexa Tablet


TP-Link Unveils a Slew of New Kasa Devices, Including a Video Doorbell

TP-Link has made a huge splash with its Kasa smarthome devices over the last couple of years, but the lineup has been fairly limited until now. The company has announced a handful of new things, including a video doorbell. The Kasa Smart Video Doorbell, as it’s called, can record video in 2K HDR and has night vision capabilities. It also comes with hardware-supported face detection, which allows the camera to differentiate between people and other objects, as well as recognize who exactly is at...
Tags: Google, Crafts, Alexa, Kasa, Kasa Cam, Google Home Hub, Slew of New Kasa Devices


The Best Wi-Fi Cams For Your Amazon Echo

If you have an Echo Show or Echo Spot, it can be paired with a compatible Wi-Fi cam to bring up the video feed on the display. If you’re in the market for a Wi-Fi cam and want it to work with Alexa, here are the best ones for the job Amazon Cloud Cam ($119) If you’re already knee-deep into the Amazon smarthome ecosystem and want to start equipping your home with Wi-Fi cams that are compatible with Alexa, you really can’t go with Amazon’s own Cloud Cam. There’s really nothing too special abou...
Tags: Amazon, Crafts, Logitech, Alexa, Logitech Circle


How to Search All Streaming Services For a Movie or TV Show

Is the TV show you want to watch on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, or HBO? And which service has the best price for a digital movie rental? The below solutions will answer those questions in an instant. Search From Your TV’s Streaming Box All the big modern TV-streaming boxes, including the Roku, Apple TV, Fire TV, and Android TV devices—have built-in search features. They search multiple apps at the same time, and you can type out the name of a show or movie using your remote control or speak...
Tags: Apple, Google, Amazon, Crafts, Hbo, Siri, Roku, Alexa, Netflix Hulu Amazon, Roku Apple TV Fire TV, Netflix Hulu Amazon Prime HBO YouTube, USA Head


10 Annoying Problems You Can Solve with Smarthome Devices

Smarthomes are easier to put together than ever. While they’re still not a necessity, what they are useful for is solving annoying problems around your home. No More House Shouting Smarthomes don’t always work well in family situations. Automation is particularly hard in homes with families and music integration can lead to account issues. But one area where Smarthomes shine is communication. If you’ve ever asked a child to tell the family there’s dinner, and all they did was yell “dinner” a...
Tags: Amazon, Crafts, Amazon Echo, Alexa, Echos, Google Home, Smarthome Devices


The Best In-Wall Smart Outlets

Smart plugs are a convenient way to add smarts to just about any appliance, but if you want a more permanent and cleaner solution, in-wall smart outlets are the way to go. Here are the best ones that are worth purchasing. Of course, in-wall smart outlets aren’t for everyone. Renters and even just those who aren’t comfortable messing with electrical wiring can benefit from smart plugs instead. However, if you’re able to, installing in-wall smart outlets is a great way to avoid bulky smart plugs ...
Tags: Google, Amazon, Crafts, NEC, Alexa, Honeywell, Topgreener


Trending on Gardenista: New Years in the Garden

This week on Gardenista, the editors revisited the 10 Most-Read Stories of 2018, plus a winter DIY and the best of holiday sleds for this quiet period between the holidays: Above: Ideas to take away from hipster homesteaders? Remodel a shepherd’s hut and cook outdoors in the fields, raise a hammock, and let sheep graze instead of mowing. Read more in 11 Garden Ideas to Steal from Hipster Homesteaders, one of the most popular posts of the year. Above: Alexa rounds up the best old-fashion...
Tags: Garden, Books, Alexa, Trending on Gardenista, Gardenista, Indoor/Outdoor Living, Outdoor & Gardens



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