Amazon just rolled out a long-promised for the Echo. Alexa Announcements turns the company’s smart speaker line into a one-way intercom system, letting owners communicate with the family across a household.
At its base level, it’s kind of a relay system. Tell the device, “Alexa, announce that dinner is ready,” and Alexa will say, “Dinner is ready” through all connected Echos in the home. It’s like the world’s most boring game of Telephone. You can also speak directly through the device, by saying “Alexa, tell everyone…” or “Alexa, broadcast…”
It should be a pretty handy addition for those who have multiple Echo devices in different rooms. It joins existing communications like Alexa Calling, Messaging and Drop In — only this one is, as they say in horror movies, coming from inside the house. It’s also a good way for Amazon to sell second and third Echos to people who are already on-board with Amazon’s smart speaker.
The feature has started rolling out to Echo users in the US and Canada.