Episode 36

Alexa is Now a Clock Radio

Amazon Music News: Goodbye Music Storage - Hello Hits By Location - Waking Up to Music Amazon quietly announced this week it’s retiring its Amazon Music Storage subscription plans, with plans to completely disallow playing or downloading songs from the service starting in January 2019. So in the past, you could upload your entire music catalog into Amazon and have it available to play (and for Alexa). There’s a long grace period before access to your music is permanently disabled, however. The tracks you’ve already uploaded to Amazon Music will still be available until January 2019. The shutdown affects both the free storage plan, which allowed for 250 songs to be stored in the cloud, as well the paid plan – originally $25 per year – which offered cloud storage for up to 250,000 songs. MP3 files you purchased from Amazon will stay available. If you are an Amazon Music Unlimited or  Prime Music customers you can now ask Alexa to "Play the top songs in (your city" or the "hits in (your city).  Another feature is "Play More Like This." So you could say, "Alexa, play songs similar to Billy Joel" or "Play songs like Piano Man." We all know about settings alarms with Alexa, now you can have the alarm be music. The new musical alarm feature supports Amazon Music, Spotify, Pandora, TuneIn, SiriusXM and iHeartRadio. Users can, through voice commands, set daily alarms for a specific song, playlist, or radio station. You could say, "Alexa wame me up at 7:30 AM to Good Morning Good Morning by The Beatles. On Amazon Music, users are supposed to be able to ask Alexa to set a musical alarm based on just a couple lyrics. Here is the example from Amazon: “Alexa, set an alarm at 7 a.m. to the song that goes ‘I'm a cowboy, on a steel horse I ride.'” I personally can get the lyric thing to work. Amazon Unlimited Music is (currently) .99 for three months then $7.99. If you have Amazon Prime you have access to 2 million Songs. Amazon Echo Buttons Get a Game The Amazon button got lost in the shuffle of all the different devices being launched at the same time earlier this year. The buttons pair to an Echo device via bluetooth, serving as gameshow buzzers. Trivial Pursuit Tap is one of the first third-party applications to take advantage of the little plastic discs, turning the smart home speaker into a makeshift, at-home, Alexa-based gameshow. Users can connect up to four of the Buttons at once, assigning different colors to each player. I think this is one of those things that once you see it in action, it could become very popular. A package of 2 buttons goes for $20 FireFox Comes to Fire TV I haven't tried this yet, but Amazon announce that firefox will now be available on which allows you to search the web (including YouTube) Full Story Things To Try With Alexa Alexa, open Fireplace Sounds." Alexa, sing a Christmas rap Alexa, sing a Christmas carol Alexa, read “The Night Before Christmas Alexa, play Christmas Sounds. Alexa, tell me a holiday limerick Alexa, tell me a football joke

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About the Podcast

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Alexa Cast | An Unofficial Journey of an Amazon Echo User
Follow the journey of using the Amazon Echo and get power tips and get more out of your Amazon Echo

About your host

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Dave Jackson

Dave Jackson began podcasting in 2005 and launched the School of Podcasting (schoolofpodcasting.com). His School of Podcasting show has over 4.0 million downloads. He has helped hundreds of people plan, launch, and grow their podcasts. He is the author of the book Profit from your podcast and is a featured speaker at events. In 2016 Dave joined Libsyn (the largest podcast hosting company) as part of their tech support team.  In 2018 he was inducted into the Academy of Podcasters Hall of Fame.

Find all his shows at www.powerofpodcasting.com