10 of the best questions to ask Alexa this week
The answers to these burning questions are a simple voice command away. Here's what to ask Alexa right now
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When it comes to the best questions to ask Alexa, the list is fun-filled. If you need answers to pressing home or garden-related queries, or just want to solve the random question that's been swilling around your head today, the voice assistance makes it so convenient. While we used to have to scour through dusty encyclopedia books or run through the Yellow pages (remember those?!) to source information, these days all we need to do is ask Alexa. Good times.
Amazon recently compiled a list of some of the most popular questions asked so far this year, some of which we thought would be fun to share with you here so you can try for yourself. 'It’s been so interesting to see how people are using their devices for so many different needs,' says Dennis Stansbury, Alexa UK & Ireland Country Manager. 'From helping to stay organized, to following a favorite football team and learning more about big events like The Queen’s Jubilee, Alexa provides answers all through the power of voice.'
So if you've already set up Alexa (opens in new tab), honed in on some of the best Alexa skills (opens in new tab), and are wondering what to ask your personal voice assistant next, try these best questions to ask Alexa. We've thrown a few useful home and garden questions into the mix too. Enjoy!
10 best questions to ask Alexa
1. Alexa, how old is the queen?
Asking Alexa how old the Queen is has been a very popular question so far this year, which is not surprising considering the Queen's Jubilee celebrations are in full swing. In fact, answering questions to any historical facts about Kings and Queens in general is one of the best Alexa skills. It's also very useful for letting you know which days main calendar dates fall on including Mother's Day and Father's Day or when the next leap year is.
2. Alexa, what’s the animal of the day?
Kids will love asking Alexa what the animal of the day is. Alexa is on hand to provide a snippet of information on the animal in question. And it's not your standard pigeon or garden fox - the great thing about this feature is that you'll learn about animals you never knew existed - from the Vampire Squid to the Tripod Fish - who knew?!
3. Alexa, remind me to water the plants every Sunday at 9am
We’ve all been there – bought a gorgeous Yukka for the corner of the living room with such good intentions, only to remember weeks later that its Sahara-dry soil hasn't had a drop of water. The solution? Ask Alexa to remind you to water the plants every week. You will sleep sounder.
4. Alexa, show my Facebook photos
If you're bored of your blank Alexa Echo Show screen staring at you, customise the screen with your favorite memories from Facebook to make it double up as a photo frame.
You will need to launch the Alexa app and go to the menu settings, then photos and log into your Facebook account to allow this feature to work.
5. Alexa, sing a song
Feel like you need cheering up? Just ask Alexa to sing you a song or entertain you with its cheeky personality. We can't say the songs are going to be enjoyable, but they just might make you smile. Also try 'Alexa, what's your name?' and 'Alexa, how are you?' and see what response you get.
6. Alexa, what’s the latest football news?
Step aside SportsCenter, Alexa is on hand to give you your daily dose of sports news. Asking Alexa for updates on sporting matches has been particularly popular this year, and you can personalize the info you get depending on your team or sporting hero.
7. Alexa, what's on my calendar today?
A question such as 'Alexa, what's on my calendar today?' comes in super useful when you've woken up bleary-eyed on a Friday, thinking it's Saturday. This question will provide useful information about your day and give you the gentle nudge you need to get into gear as you sip your morning brew. You will need to sync up your calendar via the Alexa app first, of course.
8. Alexa, play cleaning music
When you're tasked with tidying and cleaning your house and not really feeling the vibe, try asking Alexa for a little pick-me-up music to get you enthused. When we asked Alexa for cleaning music our Echo Show burst into Vivaldi's The Four Seasons Violin Concerto in E Major by Nigel Kennedy, which was just what we needed to encourage us to buff the bath at top speed.
Better still, if you have an Alexa-compatible device such as a robot vacuum cleaner, you can ask Alexa remotely to start it and get your ship in shape in no time.
9. Alexa, let's go to work
Working from home? Sometimes it can be hard to feel energised and make the transition from cup of coffee on the sofa, to zoom call in the office, which is where Alexa can help.
To make sure you're suitably set up in your home office and ready to start your day, you can set up a working routine in the Alexa app that turns on the lights and smart plugs for your computer. You can simultaneously get your smart speaker to play some ambient music in the background and create a welcoming space that will get you in the work zone in no time.
10. Alexa, what should I cook for dinner?
That million dollar question that the whole household relies on come 6pm, 'Alexa what should I cook for dinner?' can be an enlightening question. It's a particularly useful thing to ask on the days when you're stuck for ideas and simply feel like serving up a tin of baked beans. You can even personalise the question based on your dietary needs.
When we asked Alexa for ideas on what to eat for dinner, it pulled up a range of BBC Good Food recipes including Mussels in red pesto. Stick a glass of wine in our hands and yep, that'll do.
What are Alexa routines?
You can use Alexa Routines to automate your daily tasks. They really come into their own when you're busy and want to add a little fuss-free control to everyday tasks. Using the Alexa App you can set up specific routines to make your day a little easier.
'The choice of what 'routines' you can schedule on the Alexa app is ample,' says Laura Comfort, smart tech expert from Currys (opens in new tab). 'For example, you can create an Alexa routine to set the alarm and turn the lights on, turn the heating on and play your favorite song - simultaneously or one after the other. Alternatively, you can use Alexa to create a bedtime routine for yourself or the kids, whereby Alexa will dim the lights, put on some relaxing music and even say goodnight!'
One of the UK's most respected tech and smart homes writers, Emily Peck also covers everything from interiors style to decorating trends. She is a contributor to Wired UK, and has also had a column in House Beautiful. She has written for publications such as Grand Designs, Stylist, Shortlist, Woman&Home, BBC, Ideal Home and House & Garden. She was once the Features Editor of Ideal Home.
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