In a bid for total smart home domination Amazon has expanded the Alexa ‘Hunches’ feature so it can act independently.
This means if you fall asleep with a light on, the digital assistant may turn it off for you, or if you’re on vacation, it might lower the thermostat to save you some money on your electricity bill.
This feature isn’t entirely new. The Alexa Hunches feature launched in 2018 in the U.S., but previously it needed to ask for user permissions before acting on its Hunch. Now after an update, it can act on its own, which makes it even more useful. The Verge notes that an Amazon support article says that users will have control over which Hunches Alexa can act on or not. That said, the article in question is a bit vague, so MobileSyrup has reached out for more info.
Amazon is also rolling out a new Energy section to the Alexa app to estimate how many kWh of energy your connected devices use in a week.
As of the time of writing, neither of these features appeared in my Alexa app on iOS or Android, so MobileSyrup has also asked Amazon about the Canadian rollout of these features. When I asked my Echo Dot about Hunches, it seems to suggest that it can work here, but as I said there is nothing in my apps.
Hopefully, the new Hunches feature rolls out in Canada because there’s something exciting about Alexa being able to automatically turns the light off. It hasn’t happened often, but I’ve definitely forgotten to turn off my lights more than once, only to wake up to a weirdly bright house.
I’ve often found that smart homes are just as much of a hassle as dumb homes once you get bogged down in too many apps. Having a voice assistant helps cut down on this by making it easy to ask for lights to come on and off, but the next step is lights turning on and off on their own and this update makes me hope that Alexa might be a way to do this.
Source: The Verge