Experiment: Alexa Free For A Week

I have an embarrassing confession to make about being a parent. My Digital Assistant currently holds more authority with my kids than I do.

Yes, it’s true. Please withhold your judgement. Alexa took a 1 week vacation here is what happened…

Recently, we had a taping for a local TV program and I took the office Amazon Echo out for our demonstration on the set. The unit I have in our house was gone for a week. I thought…will I miss it? Is this Personal Assistant technology just kind of nice to have or does it offer a real world convenience that once we get used to we don’t want to live without?

Verdict: …a definite “real world” convenience…for me. You may be different.

Why? Like many of my counterparts with children under the age of 20, I’m in a stage of life where TIME is the most precious commodity. There’s NEVER enough of it. Have a free 15 minutes? You bet I’ve got a list of 26 things to do and several unread emails to read…never mind texts, Facebook messages and Snapchats from my 9 year old daughter.

We are a busy society! Probably too busy, maybe obsessed with being busy some would say.

So a “personal assistant” seems like a great idea. What is the top convenience I missed most?

By FAR my favorite – when I tell my kids we HAVE to leave right this minute or we are going to be late…I get no movement, maybe if I’m LUCKY a little twitch of an eye that indicates they in fact have not lost their hearing. Fifth time and a raised voice, I get their attention….and…I’m told I don’t need to “yell”,.. insert eye roll here.

One day, I set the timer on our Amazon Echo to go off at 8:45am. I let the kids know that the chime signals it is time to leave or we will be LATE for school. While they do not like to listen to mom, they HATE to be late. Apparently, “fashionably late” is not a cool thing anymore, who knew?

First time – chime goes off at 8:45am …kids line up like soldiers, ready to go, not a word from me. I kid you not. It’s measureable, seven tardys in the fall and one in the Spring – BOOM. First time, every time, without fail.


So…yes, they listen to a digital assistant more than me! Now you know this sad fact. I am working on building my own authority with them but that is another blog all together.

In the comments I’d be interested to hear what you would miss the most if your Digital Assistant took a vacation.

Stay Smart!

Jen Mallett


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