Amazon has started releasing the latest update for the Alexa Guard (Also known as Vacation Mode) to the Smart Home Alexa Device, this includes older generations such as the 2nd Generation Amazon Echo.
Alexa Guard automatically uses its onboard microphone to listen to specific sounds such as broken glass, smoke alarms & fire alarms.
Once this has been triggered you will receive a notification on your phone/tablet with the Amazon Echo app installed alerting you of the issue.
Alexa Guard is free but still needs to be manually activated by you. It requires you to first speak “Alexa, I’m leaving” to activate Guard on your Echo and to force Alexa to begin listening for more than just the “Alexa” wake word.It requires you to first speak “Alexa, I’m leaving” to activate Guard on your Echo and to force Alexa to begin listening for more than just the “Alexa” wake word.
As of the moment, these are the devices which work with Alexa Guard:
Alexa Guard automatically listens for the sound of Breaking Glass which was recorded and trained via machine learning practices.
Alexa uses machine learning to determine the right lighting activity for your home based on lighting usage across customers.Amazon Representative
Whilst many may see this as a breach of their own security, I feel like with the controversy behind “Amazon Key”, this in line with the camera they supply could bolster every budget Smart Home makers security, It appears that Amazon got in touch with CNBC who stated that they hired a licensed contractor to break various sizes and thicknesses of glass with various items to create a database of different triggers.
This team broke hundreds of different windows, in different sizes, including single pane and double pane, with a variety of instruments including crow bars, hammers, bricks, baseball bats, and more,Amazon Representative to CNBC
Alexa can be connected to use Ring Alarm and ADT pulse who can then disarm your security system by voice control.
This also allows Alexa to forward all audio recordings to your security service of choice so they can determine whether this is a casual glass being dropped or an actual break in!
This does however vary from security provider to security provider, so it isn’t a 100% guarantee and we would definitely suggest installing a small security camera / surveillance system such as Blink X, Nest Cam or Arlo Pro.
Remember to check out our other blog posts on Smart Home Security.
This is not currently a feature Amazon has decided to implement unfortunately, it is expected for you to check your tools available and contact the emergency services if you see fit.
However if you do have a professional security service they may be able to handle this for you.
If an Echo hears a window break, it can send you an alert to your phone along with a live video feed if you have an Echo with a camera on it, like the Echo Show.
An alert includes a 10-second audio recording of the glass breaking and anything else the Echo heard, but it otherwise doesn’t listen unless you speak Alexa again.
Simply put, no. There is no current official battery powered method of doing this, there are alternative methods such as the Gocybei Battery Base which we highly recommend for 1st and 2nd Generation Echo’s.
If the internet or your power does cut out, once this is back it will be fine however it will have cancelled your trigger for “Alexa, I’m Leaving”. So this would need to be run again (Even if this is redundant).
A solution to this would be an Arduino board which is setup with a speaker to automatically talk to Alexa when you’re out and set all the commands back up, although this is extreme!
You may have heard of an Alexa Skill called Guard Dog which detects your home with the use of Dog Bark noises, these range from a Rottweiler, Pitbull, Doberman, German Sheppard, Great Dane & Chihuahua.
My suggestion here is to avoid apps like this entirely, the built-in Alexa Guard tool does the job much better than any of these third-party tools.
As of writing this, there is no feature built into Sonos which allows you to use Alexa Guard with the Speaker. In this case, keep your Alexa device near your door to turn on Alexa Guard with ease.
As of writing this, it’s still not out in the UK. There is no ETA on the release and it seems like it’s not been a priority for Amazon to release this.