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How do I set up Alexa? How to use Amazon’s smart speaker

"Alexa, run system set up."

The new Amazon.com Inc. Echo sits on display during the company's product reveal launch event in downtown Seattle, Washington, U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2017. Amazon unveiled a smaller, cheaper version of its popular Alexa-powered Echo speaker that the e-commerce giant said has better sound. Photographer: Daniel Berman/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Amazon’s virtual assistant AI Alexa has revolutionised the way many of us live our lives, allowing us to set alarms, play music, and even do our shopping with nothing but the sound of our voices.


However before we can bask in laziness relaxation, there’s sadly a little bit of set up involved – which can’t be done by voice commands alone.

So as Alexa prepares to invade yet more homes thanks to the always great tech deals of Amazon Prime Day and Black Friday, here’s how to get the smart speaker up and running for your next weekly shop.

How to set up Alexa

How to set up Alexa

Despite Alexa’s revolutionary capabilities and awfully smart tech, the setup is thankfully dead simple. See our little guide below:

  1. Make sure your Alexa device is plugged in.
  2. Download the Alexa app on your smartphone, tablet, or PC.
  3. Sign in to the app with your Amazon account, or register if you do not have one.
  4. If this is your first device, you should be greeted by a prompt asking to set up a device. Click “yes”, and make sure Bluetooth is turned on.
  5. Select the appropriate Alexa-powered device from the list, and follow the on-screen instructions.

If you would like to add a second device, this is just as easy. From the app’s home screen tap the “More” button on the bottom right-hand side, click “Add a device” and follow the instructions once again.

You can also check out our guide to Alexa compatible devices – from TVs to light bulbs and even plugs, there’s an awful lot of voice-controlled tech out there.

How much is Alexa?

Amazon’s Alexa comes in all sorts of shapes and sizes now, with an entire family of Alexa-supported Echo devices such as tablets, dots, and the original speaker block. The price, therefore, depends on which particular model you’d like – we’ve broken down the main ones here:

Amazon Echo (3rd Generation)

Amazon Echo

The original Echo design is still going strong, now with 360° Dolby audio, smart home voice control, and new skills such as fitness tracking. Read more in our Amazon Echo 3rd gen review.

Buy now for £69.99

Amazon Echo Dot (3rd generation)

Echo Dot

The smaller, cheaper, but just as impressive Echo edition, the latest Dot model comes with a new fabric design, improved speaker, and the ability to pair with other Echo Dots.

Buy now for £49.99

Amazon Echo Show

Amazon Echo Show

That’s right – no longer a faceless speaker, Alexa now has a screen. This smart screen still has all the voice control of an Alexa speaker, but can now make video calls, stream films and TV shows, and show photo albums.

Buy now for £89.99

If you’re looking for a bargain Echo speakers and other Alexa-supported devices are always a big focus on Amazon Prime Day, and we also suspect they’ll be part of Amazon’s Black Friday deals too.


For more tech news check out our Technology section.