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How new Alexa features can help care for the older people in your life

It can be challenging when caring for an aging loved one. There aren’t many tools to make the job more accessible, and with COVID-19 around, face-to-face meetings are difficult.

But when you can’t physically be with your loved ones, companies like Amazon attempt to make the world a smaller place. Through initiatives such as Alexa Together, the service can send you daily check-in alerts or dispatch emergency services if a fall is detected.

Expanding on the remote caring of the elderly, Amazon has now added two new features to Alexa Together. Read on to see what these features are and how to enable them.  

Here’s the backstory

Amazon’s Alexa includes several security features and health add-ons. For example, you can ask Alexa for medical advice and to put you in contact with a doctor. An Echo device can also listen for glass breaking or an unattended appliance.

But the most comprehensive offering, especially if you are the primary caregiver to an elderly family member, is Alexa Together. Through the $19.99 per month subscription fee, you can set up custom alerts when someone uses Alexa in the morning or if there is no activity at all.

It also includes calling for help through Alexa, where trained agents can dispatch emergency services. Also, if an Echo device or mobile phone detects a fall, it will automatically dial through to the agents.

Here are the two new features that are rolling out with Alexa Together:

Circle of Support

Amazon knows that it is difficult to care for someone, especially if you do so by yourself. So the Circle of Support lets up to 10 caregivers assist the same person. In addition, the senior or caregiver can add additional people to the circle, and it can be anyone from a sibling to a neighbor or spouse.

Everyone in the Circle of Support will get daily alerts and quick check-ins through the activity feed. Still, only the designated primary caregiver can use Remote Assist if the loved one chooses to enable that feature.

Remote Assist Routines

Routines help group everyday actions into an automated system. This is especially helpful when older people struggle to remember or access certain things. For example, a routine can automate the process if someone switches off their alarm, turns on the bedroom lights, and then listens to the news.

Typically, routines must be set up on the home’s device, but through Remote Assist Routines, the primary caregiver can do that instead. Audio alerts can also ensure that a loved one takes their medication at a specific time.

There is a 6-months free trial available for Alexa Together, and it’s $19.99 per month (plus tax) after that. The person receiving support only needs one Echo or Alexa-enabled device in their home to use Alexa Together.

Need a new Echo device?

Here are two Alexa-enabled devices to add to your home if you don’t have one yet. You’ll love the convenience they provide.

Echo Dot (4th Gen, 2020 release)

The Echo Dot is Amazon’s most popular smart speaker with Alexa. The sleek, compact design delivers crisp vocals and balanced bass for full sound. Ask Alexa to tell a joke, play music, answer questions, play the news, check the weather, set alarms, and more.

Echo Show 8 (2nd Gen, 2021 release)

The Echo Show 8 has an HD touchscreen, adaptive color, and stereo speakers to bring entertainment to life. Make video calls with a 13 MP camera that uses auto-framing to keep you centered.

Glance at your calendars and reminders. Get daily recipe ideas and cook along hands-free with step-by-step instructions. Use your voice to set timers, update lists, see news or traffic updates and more.

Keep reading

New Alexa features: Sound detection, refill medications and more

‘Alexa, print my grocery list’ – How to print using just your voice

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