Alexa: The Window to Independence

Alexa: The Window to Independence

New innovations in technology are making seniors more independent every day.  Alexa is one that is at the forefront.  It has helped countless seniors to regain some autonomy in their lives.  Alexa is an artificially intelligent (AI) personal assistant that is the voice recognition program of  Amazon’s Echo.  Commands are voice controlled.  Some of the most common uses are:

  • Listen to music and audio books
  • Hear day/date/time
  • Get news, weather, sports updates
  • Control lights, thermostats, televisions
  • Schedule reminders for appointments
  • Set timers and alarms
  • Hear jokes
  • Answer questions

Tasks involving lights, televisions, thermostats, etc. require connectivity through Wi-Fi (smart home devices).  However, items like lights can be converted through an attachment to the outlet and plug.  Additional items can be connected in other ways.  Installing the connectors is often simple enough for a family member, neighbor or friend to do.

Seniors with early stage Dementia are helped by having a friendly voice respond to questions asked repeatedly such as what day/time is it?  This reduces the frustration of loved ones when visiting.