Meet ‘Alexa’ Amazon’s new device that can control your home lighting

Philips Hue will also be compatible with the Echo, meaning you will be able to adjust the strength of your light fixtures using your own voice.

The Amazon Echo will feature a voice control capability that will allow you to turn off your lights and adjust your central heating with the sound of your voice. The Echo is a smart-speaker that responds to the name ‘Alexa’.

Amazon has announced a partnership with Hive, the smart-home platform developed by British Gas. The Echo will be compatible with Hive Lights and and Hive Active Heating.

Philips Hue will also be compatible with the Echo, meaning you will be able to adjust the strength of your light fixtures using your own voice.

As well as the Echo, Amazon are also launching the cheaper second generation Echo Dot mini-speaker, which features an even more nimble ‘Alexa’, which can trigger pre-set home lighting scenes. This means that you will also be able to voice-activate colour changing as well as dimming your lighting.

So, if you have created a sunny lighting scene in your bedroom that involves orange and red hues that adjusts in brightness as the sun sets, you could activate this by simply saying, ‘Alexa, turn on scene sunny day’ and she will happily oblige, (that is if you want to ascribe a sex to a gadget designed by a multi-billion dollar corporation out to get you to spend more money.)

You will not be able to ask ‘Alexa’ to change the colour of individual light sources if you are using the Hue, but you will be in with a chance if you own Hue’s competitor Lifx, which is compatible with Amazon’s speaker.

Hue is able to communicate with ‘Alexa’s’ arch-enemy ‘Siri’ though to change the colour of individual light sources.

The Amazon Echo will be available to buy from the 16th of September 2016.

  • Innovations in Li-fi and IoT will be demonstrated at the LuxLive 2016 exhibition in London on Wednesday 23 November and Thursday 24 November 2016. A special IoT Arena will  explore developments in connected lighting and its role in the Internet of Things. Entry is free - register at www.luxlive.co.uk