Now make phonecalls with Amazon Alexa

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The new versions of Amazon Echo and Echo Plus include an interesting new feature, as announced at the end of last week. You’ll be able to use the devices as yet another way to make phonecalls with Amazon Alexa.

Echo and Echo Plus will permit voice calling and messaging. You can simply ask Alexa to call anyone in your contacts list to be connected to your contacts Echo device or Alexa app on a smartphone. You can also enable a new feature called Drop In when you want to connect with your closest family and friends, or other Echo devices in your home. For example, you can “drop in” to ask what time dinner will be ready, or check in with a close relative. With Drop In, you’re always in control—turn it off at any time, select who is allowed to Drop In on you, and choose which devices are available for Drop In.

Phonecalls with Amazon Alexa will be rolling out across the Alexa family in the UK over the course of the coming week so current Alexa users will be able to make calls and send messages to friends and family using Amazon Echo, Echo Dot or the Alexa app.

Amazon has also introduced Echo Connect, which is a new Alexa accessory that turns your Echo into a high quality, hands-free speakerphone for your home phone line. Echo Connect will work with your existing home phone service – either landline or VoIP. Without touching a single button, ask Alexa to call anybody from your contact list – when you call, they will see your home phone number as the caller ID. When someone you know calls your home phone, Alexa will announce their name from your contacts list—just ask Alexa to answer to start the conversation. Echo Connect will be available in the UK early next year.

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