IFTTT and Amazon Alexa #19

Tue Mar 27 2018 (13:32)

In this episode, Teri discusses how to use IFTTT and Amazon Alexa together to open the door to even more functionality with your Amazon Echo device.

IFTTT and Amazon Alexa

IFTTT stands for IF This, Then That! This is an app that allows you to integrate different services to increase the functionality of each of the services. This includes hundreds of different services – everything from email to social media, calendars to smart home products, and of course ALEXA, among many, many others!

IFTTT is based on “Applets” or “Recipes” – these are essentially simple logic commands that cause one service to trigger an action in another service. For example, having a timer go off on Alexa (i.e. the trigger) can cause a light to go on elsewhere (i.e. the action). Or adding something to your to-do list on Alexa (i.e. the trigger) can cause the item to be emailed to your inbox (i.e. the action). There are literally thousands of IFTTT applets that can be developed.

Now here is the caveat: As us Canadians know all too well, some of the functionality is not available in Canada while it is available in the States. Nevertheless, there is still a lot that we can do with IFTTT and Amazon Alexa in Canada.

How to you use Pre-Built applets for IFTTT and Amazon Alexa?

  1. Create a free account at IFTTT.
  2. Search for “Amazon Alexa.”
  3. Provide your Amazon account credentials.
  4. Select an Applet that is already created and then activate it (you will need to enter the credentials for any other service you want to use).

How to Create your Own Applet for IFTTT and Amazon Alexa?

  1. Create a free account at IFTTT.
  2. Click on your username.
  3. Click on New Applet.
  4. Click on “+ this” (i.e. the trigger) in the middle of the screen.
  5. Search for “Amazon Alexa.”
  6. Provide your Amazon account credentials.
  7. Choose a trigger from among the provided list:
  • Say a specific phrase
  • Ask what’s on your To Do List
  • Item added to your To Do List
  • Item completed on your To Do List
  • Item edited on your To Do List
  • Item deleted on your To Do List
  • Ask what’s on your Shopping List
  • Item added to your Shopping List
  • Item completed on your Shopping List
  • Item edited on your Shopping List
  • Item deleted on your Shopping List
  • Ask for a sports team’s score
  • Ask for a sports team’s next game
  • New song played
  • Your alarm goes off
  • Your timer goes off
  1. Click on “+ that” (i.e. the action) in the middle of the screen.
  2. Search for the action service you want to use (e.g. Kasa app) and click on the icon.
  3. Choose a specific action (these options will depend on the specific service you have selected)
  4. Now your Alexa trigger is set to cause an action on the particular service you selected!

Now what?

Have fun! Experiment with different IFTTT Applets and see what you come up with! And make sure to comment below if you find an applet that is really creative, unique, or useful. I look forward to seeing what you do with IFTTT and Amazon Alexa!

List of resources mentioned in this episode: