Alexa Guard mode now rolling out for Echo devices

Alexa can recite your Fitbit data to you.                  Tyler Lizenby  CNET

Alexa can recite your Fitbit data to you. Tyler Lizenby CNET

An update is rolling out that enables the new "Alexa Guard" feature. Though Amazon doesn't provide professional monitoring services, you can choose to forward Alexa Guard's smart alerts to ADT and have them take action or, if you're subscribed to Ring Protect Plus, contact emergency services through the Ring app when Alexa Guard detects something that needs addressing. Echo owners can simply issue the command, "Alexa, I'm leaving", and the digital assistant will switch the Guard feature over to Away mode.

Alexa Guard listens for things like breaking glass, smoke alarms, and other noises that might indicate a problem in your home. "Just set Guard to Away mode and Alexa will do the rest".

Alexa Guard is free for all Echo users and is rolling out to USA users today.

The new defense system is compatible with the entire family of Echo devices. Amazon has enabled Alexa Guard to let you drop in on your Echo remotely to check out just what is happening at home.

Alexa Guard can also activate smart lights to make it seem like you're home. Once a designated event has occurred, you would get an alert telling you which type of sound was detected as well as an audio clip of the event. It delivers down-firing, 100W of bass through its 6-inch woofer, and you can pair it with an Echo or two to create a 2.1 stereo system.

U.S. users can set up the free feature from a mobile device: Open the latest version of the Alexa app, navigate to the settings menu, and select "Guard". Amazon takes note of that Alexa Guard isn't meant to be a trade for a caution framework, and it can't alarm experts. To do so, users who are about to leave their home must say, "Alexa, I'm leaving".

More details about Alexa Guard is available at Amazon's FAQ.

All that said, Amazon is quick to point out that Guard is not a security system in and of itself. It's also important to note that Guard can not contact emergency services, such as the police or fire department, and the service as a whole goes down if there is an internet or power outage-it's a cloud based service.

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