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Alexa Guard looks to turn your smart assistant into private security

Hey Alexa, guard my s***.

amazon echo sitting on a stack of books
Image: Unsplash

Amazon is now looking at ways to let its Alexa-powered devices help secure your home.

A preview build of Alexa Guard rolled out to Echo devices on Thursday. This build includes the audio-based security features that Amazon announced back in September.

Think of it as steroids for your existing security system. Once you put Alexa Guard into Away mode, your Echo devices listen out with their powerful microphones for any potential issues.

More about Alexa Guard

That means you’ll get phone notifications if the sound of a smoke or carbon monoxide alarm goes off, or if it hears glass breaking. I have to wonder if it can tell the difference between a window breaking and your cat being an asshole and pawing something off a shelf.

Either way, you’ll get a short audio clip of what Alexa heard for you to listen to. You can also allow Alexa to alert your security system’s provider, assuming you have one.

In addition, you can integrate Alexa Guard into your smart lighting system, so it can make it look like someone is home by changing the lights on and off. This feature is also compatible with popular systems from ADT and Ring.

Amazon also released a new API for Alexa

Also out today is a new API for Alexa, which allows customers to control connected cameras, alarms and more with Alexa voice commands. This works with systems from providers like ADT, Ring, Honeywell, Scout Alarm and Abode. Users can now arm, disarm and check the status of their home security systems with simple Alexa commands.

Amazon has been inching into the security market for a while now, ever since buying video-doorbell maker Ring back in February of this year. Amazon might be hoping that its connected security products help users feel safe using Amazon Key, the panic-inducing service that allows delivery people to place packages inside your castle.

I’d look out for some news of Amazon buying a proper security company at some point in the future, so the company can continue its push into controlling your smart home. It’s just about the only part of the picture missing at this point.

What do you think? Is this a good thing? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Maker, meme-r, and unabashed geek with nearly half a decade of blogging experience at KnowTechie, SlashGear and XDA Developers. If it runs on electricity (or even if it doesn't), Joe probably has one around his office somewhere, with particular focus in gadgetry and handheld gaming. Shoot him an email at joe@knowtechie.com.

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