There are thousands of skills available for Amazon Alexa. But sometimes you want a little more personalization and customizability. With Alexa Blueprints, you can do just that.
We’ll show you six Alexa Blueprints you can set up and use around the house within minutes.
With the Babysitter Blueprint, you no longer need to create pages of instructions or hope your babysitter remembers everything you tell them. Instead, you can develop a voice-activated skill that gives them an answer to any question they could think of.
First is the ability to provide the sitter with morning, afternoon, and evening schedules. You can also store information about allergies, medications, and any special notes that Alexa will offer when asked. There are customizable options if you want to tell the babysitter where items are and how to do things. You can also give a list of emergency contacts that Alexa will relay.
Now, if your sitter needs a hand finding your baby’s diapers, they can just open the skill by saying, “Alexa, open My Babysitter,” and ask, “Where are the diapers?” Alexa will then give them the location you’ve specified during setup.
2. Pet Sitter
The Pet Sitter Blueprint is very similar to the Babysitter Blueprint. After all, looking after a pet can be a lot like caring for a child. Like the Babysitter Blueprint, you can provide details on:
- Your pet’s morning, afternoon, and evening schedule.
- Any allergies, medications, or special notes you need to make the sitter aware of.
- Where to find things.
- How to do things.
- Emergency contacts, like your vet.
If your pet sitter wants a list of emergency contacts, for example, they can say, “Alexa, open My Pet Sitter” and ask, “What are the emergency contacts?” Alexa will run through the entire list, giving each entry’s name and phone number.
3. Whose Turn
Whose Turn is a handy Blueprint for resolving arguments over whose turn it is to do something. Instead of lengthy discussions about why one person should or shouldn’t do the washing up, let Alexa randomly decide from a predetermined list. Alternatively, it could make an excellent addition to a party or games night where random selection is part of the fun.
There’s also the option to pick the next person on the list, which is perfect if you have a set rotation of chores or aren’t sure whose turn it is to go grocery shopping. You can add plenty of names, too — there seems to be no issue with adding 30 names when setting up the Blueprint.
To make the skill a little lighthearted, you can also customize the phrase said when a name is selected, and the sound played. To use the skill you’ve created, you can just say, “Alexa, open Whose Turn,” and Alexa will pick someone from your list.
4. Chore Chart
Like Whose Turn, the Chore Chart Blueprint can resolve disputes by bringing Alexa into the mix. It’s a novel method of doing away with a chart stuck on the refrigerator and could encourage kids to take more of an active role in their chores by using Alexa to help out.
First, you list all of your household members, then all the possible chores they could do. Then, you assign chores to each household member. This Blueprint gives you the ability to schedule chores for particular days and can even offer reminders on specific devices at a set time.
If your child has an Amazon Echo Kids in their room, for example, you could set a reminder for them to take the garbage out at 7 pm on a Tuesday. Once the chore is done, you can log that an individual has completed a chore. Additionally, you can quickly check what chores are outstanding by asking for a household member’s chore list.
Alexa will also keep track of the number of chores done throughout the week by assigning one point to completed chores. If you ask for the weekly score, Alexa will return who has completed the greatest number of chores this week, which could prompt some healthy rivalry among siblings.
If you’re interested in making chores easier with technology, check out our article on the five best Android apps for household chores.
Perhaps you don’t live in a family home and instead share your home with other adults. In that case, the Flatmate Blueprint might make house-sharing a bit easier. Similar to the Babysitter or Pet Sitter blueprints from before, the Flatmate Blueprint is a guide to your home.
You can set rules for different areas of the house, like the kitchen or living room. For instance, you could give a list of rules for the living room, such as turning off lights and cleaning up after yourself.
There’s also the option for Alexa to give contact info when asked. Instead of giving a list, this skill requires someone to ask for a specific person’s details, such as the landlord or maintenance guy, before Alexa will give them a phone number. You can also add email or physical addresses to this contact info if you wish.
Finally, you can provide instructions on how to perform particular actions like paying rent and where to find things. Now, your new housemate can use Alexa to get acquainted with their new surroundings by saying, “Alexa, open My Flatmate,” and firing away with any questions they might have.
The Sidekick Blueprint lets you create a light-hearted skill that mimics a real-life sidekick. In the setup, you can provide questions you might ask Alexa, then the answer you want it to give.
While building the skill, you’ll see plenty of Q&As that can be used for inspiration. For example, the question “Alexa, do I have any flaws?” is set to “Yes, you’re almost too good-looking. It can be entertaining.” You can provide different variations of questions to make the process more natural.
There is also a wide range of sounds that complement your answer. In the example above, the answer is given before a melodic chime is played. Overall, this skill can brighten your day and put a smile on your face, with Alexa telling you exactly what you want to hear every time.
Simplify Home Life With Amazon Alexa Blueprints
There’s no need for complicated chore lists or pages of instructions for your babysitter anymore. By using the Alexa Blueprints above, you can have a virtual taskmaster or house assistant relieve some daily pressure of home life and spend more time doing what you love.