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Can I Use Amazon’s Smart Plug Without Alexa or an Echo?

Amazon Smart Plug marketing image

With the introduction of the smart plug, came a new convenience that has even further enhanced the functionality of today’s smart home. Smart plugs have been a game-changer for those who want to integrate their ‘dumb’, or average fixtures (i.e. lamps and air conditioners), into their smart homes. One of the best selling smart plug’s … Read more

Does SwitchBot Need A Hub?

SwitchBot Mini on a table with an Amazon Echo Dot

In the ever-growing sector of smart home products arises yet another contender – the SwitchBot.  Released in 2016 on Kickstarter, then in 2017 to the general retail market, these simple, affordable, yet intuitive smart devices are practically in a class of their own.  They complete a variety of functions – from opening and closing curtains, … Read more

Using Your Philips Hue Dimmer Switch With Alexa – Is It Possible?

Philips Hue dimmer switch showing a red (error) light

The goal of most smart home owners is to get their homes to operate seamlessly and achieve interoperability with all of their smart devices. With the introduction of smart home hubs such as Amazon’s Echo, Samsung SmartThings, and Apple HomeKit, just to name a few, this goal of interoperability seemed to become a reality. However, … Read more

Help! My Amazon Echo Is Making Random Noises/Beeps/Chimes?! (How To Fix) – New Video

YouTube thumbnail for weird Amazon Echo sounds

This is a video guide to go alongside my blog post last year which walks you through everything to investigate if your Echo device is making random noises, beeps, chimes – or even weird train-like sounds! Echo devices are very useful, but they have been known to make “creepy” noises at times, which can be … Read more

New Video – Amazon Echo: Change Alexa’s Flash Briefing News & Weather To Suit You

YouTube video showing me, an Echo Dot in listening mode and the textg "Improve Alexa Flash Briefings"

The Flash Briefing feature on Amazon Echo devices is quite useful, unless you dislike the news or weather provider – in which case a very useful feature quickly becomes wasted. Thankfully it’s quite easy to change the news and weather provider used for your flash briefing, along with adding loads of other briefing sources – … Read more