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How to Fix Common Amazon Echo Problems

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The Amazon Echo has become a popular smart speaker in many homes, thanks to its ability to play music, audiobooks, answer inquiries, control lights, and generally be very useful. 

However, there are some occasions when this harmonious relationship between device and user is broken due to small glitches that can arise. 

To restore domestic balance, we have put together solutions for the five most common problems that an Amazon Echo owner can encounter. Most of the time they are not problems with the devices themselves: it is simply a case of a configuration change, or a good user error.

Why won’t my Echo connect to my Wi-Fi network?

In order for the Echo device to be able to answer questions, receive voice commands, or stream any medium, it must be connected to the Internet.

If the problem had occurred after the device was up and running, here are some things you can try. 

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The first is to simply restart the Echo itself. To do this, unplug the power cord for a few seconds and reattach it. Sometimes this can clear up any confusion that may have occurred, as can turning the router off and on again 

If you have recently changed your password, you will need to run the setup routine again, as described in the article linked above. An Echo Show (pictured above) will tell you if it’s not connected to Wi-Fi by showing the symbol with a line through it.

Finally, there may be interference from other devices on the Wi-Fi network. Amazon suggests the following ways to alleviate this problem:

  • Turn off devices you are not using to free up bandwidth on your network.
  • Move the device closer to the router and modem if it is in another room or blocked by an object.
  • Make sure your device is away from sources of potential interference, such as microwave ovens or baby monitors.
  • (Optional) Connect to your router’s 5GHz Wi-Fi frequency band (if available). Many Wi-Fi devices only connect to the 2.4 GHz band. If multiple devices use this band on your network, the network speed may be slower. You can connect to the less congested 5GHz band for better range and less interference.

Why is Alexa showing a red light and not working?

Amazon’s voice assistant Alexa constantly listens to your commands, but if you see a red light at the top or a red ring (a red line on an Echo Show screen), it will become uncommunicative. 

This is because the use of that particular color indicates that the onboard microphone has been disabled. To turn it back on, press the button with a microphone symbol that has a line drawn through it. This should turn off the red light and bring you back to being able to talk to Alexa.

How do I get Alexa to stop flashing yellow?

Another thing you can see and wonder what is going on is when the ring of light around your Echo is flashing yellow. This is not a problem: it indicates that you have received a message in your inbox. 

To clear this, you can check the Alexa app on your smartphone or say “Alexa, read my messages.”

How do I make Alexa find the devices?

If you’re having trouble getting Alexa to connect to other smart devices in your home, you’ll need to follow these basic steps to see if they help. First of all, it seems obvious, but it is always worth checking that the device in question works with the Amazon Echo range. 

Quick typing into Google “the name of the device compatible with Amazon Echo” should be enough to clear up any doubts in this regard. 

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Next, configure the device according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Make sure you’re connected to the same Wi-Fi network as your Echo (otherwise it won’t work), and then check for updates for the device.

Once done, open the Alexa app on your phone and select ‘Add device from menu’. Next, follow the prompts for the type of device you are trying to connect, making sure to complete the specific instructions provided for each particular make and model. Hope this works.

Why doesn’t Alexa play music from Spotify?

Right out of the box, Alexa doesn’t offer Spotify as a music streaming option. That does not mean that it is not compatible with the service, you just need to configure a few things.  

By default, Alexa will try to play songs from Amazon Music or My Music (whatever MP3 album you have purchased or uploaded to your Amazon Music account). 

For Spotify to be the default, you will need to have a subscription to Spotify Premium, as the free version will unfortunately not work on Amazon’s Echo devices. 

Then you have to link it with the Echo in question. To do this, open the Alexa application and click on the three-line icon in the upper left corner of the screen. 

From the menu that appears, go to ‘Settings> Music’, click on ‘Link new service’ and select ‘Spotify’ from the available options (now there is also Apple Music, if you prefer).

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Log in with your account, tap ‘Accept’ to allow Alexa to use the service, and you will be told that the service is now linked. Finally, to use the service, be sure to add “on Spotify” to the end of the voice commands. 

For example, ‘Alexa, put Karol G on Spotify’. If you don’t want to have to say ‘on Spotify’ every time, just go back to settings, tap on ‘Default Services.

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