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Turn your Amazon Echo Show into a security camera

Turn your Amazon Echo Show into a security camera

Beneath the normal, everyday voice assistant's mild appearance, Alexa has an alter-ego -- a crime-fighter, you could say -- that can be summoned with the flip of.flick of an toggle found deep within your Amazon Echo Show' s device settings. Home Monitoring is a setting that may turn your otherwise milquetoast smart display into snooping security cameras. (Bad guys not included.)

Okay, so Home Monitoring may not be the subject of superhero origin stories, but it's still pretty useful as long as you don't need a lot of advanced security camera options. It doesn't record video, so you can''n'T mount it on the ceiling unless you're Spider-Man. Nonetheless, it's very useful for checking in on children, pets, or your house while you're away.

But why not just use the Drop-In function, which does the same thing?

Because Drop-In is actually a video call, which means the device you're calling displays likewise tv footage of you, and hey, maybe you don't want that. Instead, you may want to consider a more incognito approach when you're checking on people, pets, or anything else. Do note, however, that the device does display a message indicating that he or she is watching remotely, so if it's subterfuge you're looking for, Amazon has dozens of spy cameras you might consider.

Read more. Read about our blog. Amazon announced the Echo Show 15 smart display at its September 2021 fall product launch event, along with several new Echo and Ring products.

Home Monitoring might be the solution for you if you simply want to check in on things from time to time without having to examine your appearance first. Plus, if you have the Echo Show 10, you can not only see the camera feed, but you may also pan the room left to right (though, unfortunately, not up and down). Can't do that with Drop-In, though?

Speaking of the Echo Show 10, it wasn't until this iteration of Amazon's flagship smart display that the Home Monitoring function was even introduced in the Alexa app as an option for other devices. At first, only the Echo Show 10 could perform it, but a recent update seems to have changed all that, and the first-gen Echo show 5 and Echoshow 8 now have 'Home Monitoring'. This feature is also available on the updated versions of these smart displays, the Echo Show 5 (2021) and the Echo Show 8 (2022), which were released early June.

In other words, this is a fairly new feature that's popped up on the news.

Setting up your Amazon Echo Show smart display to function as a security camera in the Alexa app is comparatively easy -- for security reasons, you must set it up on the device itself, not from within the app. It should only take you a couple of minutes, and it's well worth it. Here's how to do it.

Start with the device on which you want to make a security camera.

To use your Echo Show device as a security camera, you'll first need to configure the device's settings -- not the camera'. Device settings Device selection Device configuration (You'll probably use the app later, though). First you have to go to your physical device, the actual Echo Show smart display, swipe down from the top of the screen to access the main menu, and tap "Address." Settings > Settings Or, "Alexa, go to settings." Follow the following steps from there:

1. To the right of the building, to the left of a cliff. Home Monitoring at Home is a vital part of the home monitoring process. Tap the button to open the app. toggle toggle To turn it on, click the button.

2. Tap on the "Echo Show can help you monitor your home..." button. A window will appear telling you "Choose Show may help..." Continue reading Continue .

3. A screen will appear asking you to verify your account. Tap Tape Taping Tap. Tap Continue reading Continue .

4. Key in your Keychain Amazon account password for your Amazon Account Tap on the arrow to continue, and tap on "Taste" before continuing. Done! .

5. A message will appear with the words "All set." Tap Tape Taping Tap Done. If you let this screen time out, the Home Monitoring setting won't change and you'll have to start over at Step 1 (if you allow this to happen, you will have the setting reset at step 1)

There are two more on-device settings you can adjust from here, which we'll get to next.

Add a video delay or audio alert to enhance privacy.

Before you close out of the settings menu completely, you've got two more options to consider, both of which are privacy options.

Turning on the first toggle, labeled "Closed", should activate the second toggle. Video Delay. Video Relay (Video Delays). The first few seconds of video will be blurred, similar to what happens with a Drop-In call. This gives anyone on the other side of the camera the opportunity to react to being suddenly observed. How would they know they were suddenly on camera, you might ask?

If you turn on the other toggle on this screen, the one marked "Only" on your screen (which is marked 'On'), they'll know if you've turned on that toggle. Audio Alert: Audio Warning . With this option enabled, the device will play a sound when the camera is starting streaming, letting anyone on the other end know the video feed is going live.

If you're living alone, these settings are likely not of much assistance to you. But if you live with other people -- whether family or friends -- it's a pretty decent courtesy to warn them unless they're being monitored, so you may want to turn them both on.

How to view your new'security camera' video and audio feeds?

Now for the fun part -- checking on your cameras. Note that if you do this from the same room as the camera you're using, you should unmute your phone or tablet to avoid any audio feedback. Here are the steps:

1. Open the browser to open the window. Alexa is an Alexia-enabled device that can be used to control your voice. Tap the tap button to return to the starting position. Devices On the bottom menu, click on the option "News".

2. Horizontally scroll down the top menu and tap on the "Start" button. Cameras are typically fitted with a digital camera. . ?

3. Tap the Echo Show device that has the camera you want to view.

Next, the app will open the camera feed. If you're using the newest Echo Show 10, you can swipe left or right to pan the camera, as well as double-tap or pinch to zoom in and out.

Pro tip: Pro Tip: Rotate your phone or tablet into the landscape position for the clearest view from your device's camera. In portrait, you may single-tap the screen to bring up speaker and microphone controls or to pull out of the camera feed.

You may still want a decent security camera. Here's why.

OK, so there are a few things you can't do with your Amazon Echo Show display that you should be able to do using s/n. A security camera should do the job. You can't record video -- not even when you're streaming (unless, perhaps, you record your actual mobile device's screen). That alone reduces the usefulness of this feature by about half.

There's no quick and easy way to set up motion alerts, which are an integral part of any security camera. You could probably come up with a workaround -- like creating stdialogs to notify you if he or she detects you -- but those settings should be front and center on any security camera interface.

At the end of the day, Alexa's Home Monitoring function doesn't replace a fully functional security camera, so if you want motion alerts, video recordings, or pretty much any functionality beyond viewing.a livestream, you'll most likely want specialized security cameras.

If all you need to do is check on your pets, peek in on the younger child, or otherwise just check things out every now and then, you can keep your money in your wallet and use the device you already have fairly easily.

More Alexa and Amazon Echo must-reads

  • Best Alexa devices of the year
  • Best cheap Alexa devices of the year for Alexis devices
  • 3 reasons why you should take your Alexa devices outside of the house.
  • Every Alexa command you can give your Amazon Echo smart speaker or display is an Alex command.
  • How to use Alexa commands with your home security camera How you can use your Alexis device to control your security system

First published May 16, 2021 at 7:15 a.m. EST.

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