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Interesting indeed. But one thing I can't seem to find...can I rename the wake word? This is the single most frustrating thing about these devises. Branding is so important they will not allow you to change the gender or wakename/word!


Corporate branding keeps these devices from becoming more personal. I did see Google Home/ assistant added both genders and like 8 new voices. They plan to add an option to name your device by years end. I hope Amazon follows suit.


I hope so too. I agree with your take corporate branding probably plays heavily in locking down the open renaming of the device and "wake word". It would look bad I guess if people (me) renamed their device a dirty word.


What kills me about this is that I have multiple Google devices (phone, watch, tablet) and they all respond at once unless I disable always listening on 2 of them, which limits the usefulness.


It's going to get more interesting as Amazon pushes their "Alexa chip" to common house hold appliance manufactures as well so you can say "Alexa defrost my chicken" - the microwave needs to be smart enough to respond and everything else needs to know there is no action to take.

I don't want to hear 50 Alexa voices blabbing back at me - or at each other! "I'm sorry I don't have the chicken skill, please check the skill store to enable chicken" - says the toaster "Playing Chicken Dance from Amazon music" - the living room dot "defrosting the freezer" - says the fridge "Here are local places that serve chicken, would you like me to order you chicken" - says your phone "Ordering more chicken on your Amazon prime account" - says your watch "I could not find chicken, would you like to play Jeopardy?" - the bedroom dot


@JustinRatliff too funny! Definitely a weird future it will be if we have all devices sharing the same name lol.


For those who prefer the Google ecosystem to Amazon, it looks like they are releasing a similar dev board this fall, as well as the existing integrations to RasPi and of course IFTTT which can be used with the maker channel and EZ-B

Same issue that Justin described hilariously with a single keyword for all devices, although Google has made some noise (and assistant for Android breakdowns have shown some hints of) that they will be adding custom naming at some point.



I am not sure how multiple Alexa specific devices will respond that to that chicken command, but it could be hilarious like Justin said. We have multiple Echo Dots setup throughout our home and they used to respond like thetechguru said about Google units all at once, but they had an update and now only one responds, even if you are between two units. If our rural internet has connectivity issues, and you request something, then they all blurt out together they are having internet trouble. Alexa has a fairly new skill called blueprints, which allow you to create your own custom responses from Alexa. I created several, and they are easy, and are published usually fast, the same evening. I created one,Who is the greatest wife in the world? She answers that she checked all thu history and Steve’s wife is the best. Artamus questions her, who is your favorite robot? She responds, I have been listening to Artamus, the autobot, and he is very interesting, and I would like to know better. It is a fun skill.

Alexa Bluprints skill Steve S

#10   — Edited

Conversation one looks interesting as it seems to allow you to integrate with Alexa google IBM etc

edit: looks like these guys went bust.  Probably sued by Amazon Google and IBM :-)


anyone used the Alexa Echo Auto for cars? It is $25 CAD on Amazon, 8 microphones and Bluetooth or Aux connection I believe,  I figured it maybe small and compact enough to add a level of intelligence to a robot.


@Nink. Thanks for the heads up. I've asked Santa to put one in my stocking. Looks like useful fun.


out of stock in Canada now :-(


@Nink, there’s also the echo dot for those willing to hack. It runs off a 12V supply, so it would likely work with a 11.1V or 12V battery (maybe even a lower voltage). The speaker could be removed or replaced with a smaller one. I’m curious now, going to open mine up today:D. I’ll post some pics.


please do.  The wife made me unplug all mine so my echo dot is sitting idle.  No OK Google, no Alexa, no hey Siri.  she is sure they are spying on us.  I haven't told her the thermostat has Alexa in it  shhhhh.

#16   — Edited

Imagine the bandwidth usage if they were transmitting audio 24/7? Haha - ISPs would hate us

I have Alexa in every room. I converted my house to 100% smart a few years ago. Every switch or every bulb. The only switch that isn’t automated is the upstairs bathroom. Motion detect smart switches everywhere else to.

I love it. I have my Alexas set to respond to Echo though. I got sick of saying Alexa.

Even my Land Rover has an Alexa app. I just tell her to start the car or open the trunk and it’s done.

but for robots? Not sure what it could do. I can ask her to start the vacuum. But that’s about it. What ideas do you have for a robot that Alexa could do?


I have the Google Home mini speaker with 1 smart power plug that I can plug any 120 volt appliance to control. I was just thinking about what I should try to control; The great thing is I can use many different Voices male or Female and even a custom Male Robot voice. It can run on with a car 12 volt DC Lighter plug to USB cable (5volt 3 Amp) I just have 1 smaller 12 volt SLA battery that runs it several hours, I have not yet tried to run it on the Roomba battery supply yet but interesting test for tonight, then ditch the heavier SLA battery. On my Giant Cylon project no issue there, I use the Google mini as the main Bluetooth speaker that EZB talks with  and it is Loud with impressive bass for a small puck speaker! It does listen to me and can hear me from the washroom even on the other side of house. Smart plug can be turned on and off for many devices all at once. coffee meker in morning,lights, Roomba battery charging , many idea to think up. Am I the only one that uses Google Home, (I hated Alexa for the choice of limited voice.).From all my phones ,integrated into robot and Google mini so I can even just call robot from my phone or ask the same Google assistant voice on my phone info,weather, news. Lock downs have been fun last few months. I'm guessing Alexa does all this too but I still think Google is the winner. `