What can Alexa do? It can play songs, control your smart lights, read out news, and some mundane stuff. In the States, however, Alexa can now guard your home. Amazon has just detailed two subscription plans to its Guard home protection services and it could just be the thing working couples and bachelors may need. There’s a free version available for everyone but the paid service adds a “human touch”.
Guard isn’t a full-blown home surveillance service with dedicated hardware. Instead, it relies on your existing range of Amazon’s smart home ecosystem to keep an eye on your home while you are gone. It gives you quick access to emergency services as well as looks for any untoward incident while you are away from home. Well, it doesn’t exactly “look” – it uses the Echo speakers to listen for sounds that may be uncommon for your home.
Alexa Guard Service for smart home protection
The Alexa Guard service comes in two flavors: one is a free plan while Guard Plus requires you to pay $4.99 per month, or $49 a year. Of course, the best features are reserved for the paid model but you still get some basic levels of home protection with the free plan.
With the free plan, Alexa Guard can deliver smart alerts to you in the event of Smoke and Carbon Monoxide presence, and Glass Break sounds. It can use the mics on Echo speakers to detect such instances. If your Echo speaker is connected to smart lights and CCTV cameras, it can start flashing your home lights to scare away intruders.
If you are willing to pay for the Guard Plus service, Alexa can detect Activity Sounds and alert you. Additionally, it will play sounds of barking dogs if someone is outside and sound a siren using the Echo speakers if someone breaks-in. The paid service also lets you call the Emergency helpline hands-free from your Echo devices.
Basically, the more smart appliances you have at your disposal, the better the Guard service can function. It is still nowhere closer to the professional security system but for most Amazon customers, it provides a certain level of surveillance to at least alert you in case your home is in danger.
Currently, the service is only available in the United States and it remains to be seen whether Amazon brings it to other markets, including India. The company updated its entire range of Echo smart speakers late last year.