Can Amazon Echo be used as a baby monitor?
- By: Ashley Saunders
- June 2021
Giving birth is only the start. Your top priority is now protecting and nurturing your new baby. Thankfully smart home technology can help us ensure our newborn is safe without needing to enter their room. You might even contemplate can Amazon Echo be used as a baby monitor?
The Amazon Echo product range is a fantastic alternative to the traditional baby monitors, especially when you consider all the amazing features you have at your fingertips. All of these extras, make caring for your newborn even easier.
The simplest baby monitor allows you to listen to your little one. By downloading the Amazon Alexa app onto your phone or tablet, you can use the Drop In or Calling features to hear what’s happening with your newborn using your Echo Dot.
If you want to see your baby, then simply buy an Echo Show as it has a built-in camera and screen. Plus you can use the Drop In feature to make video calls without your baby needing to pick!
So, if you’re considering the question: can Amazon Echo be used as a baby monitor? The answer is a surrounding yes. However, it does take a bit of time to get it configured, but you only need to do this once!
Here are the steps you need to follow to use any Amazon Echo device as a baby monitor and ensure your latest creation is safe, asleep and protected.
What you need to get started
There are a few basic pieces of smart home tech you’ll need to be able to use your Amazon Echo device as a baby monitor.
An Echo device
If you don’t already have an Echo product then you’ll need one. If you’re happy with only audio, then the Echo Dot will be enough. However, if you want to be able to see your child then you’ll need an Echo Show or an Echo Spot.
A smartphone or tablet
You could technically link two Echo devices together and use them for two communication. That said, as having a newborn is expensive, you probably don’t want to spend a penny. Instead, we’ll use our smartphone or tablet as the receiver.
Optional: An Alexa compatible camera
If you already have an Echo Dot but want to be able to both hear and see your baby, then you’ll need a camera. Thankfully, there’s plenty of Alexa compatible camera that you can use with your existing device including the Blink Mini and the Ring Indoor Cam by Amazon.
Activate Drop In and Calling features
Finally, you want to ensure that the ‘Drop-in’ or ‘Calling’ features are enabled. Don’t worry, as you’ll learn more about these later.
Where to start using your Amazon Echo device as a baby monitor
It’s quite easy to use an Amazon Echo Show as a baby monitor. But first, you’ll want to consider where is the best place to put your device, so that you can clearly see your baby within their bedroom without your device being able to fall on them.
Next, you’ll need to spend a few minutes configuring the settings on the Amazon Alexa app. You have to use Alexa with the Echo device, and it must be plugged into the baby’s room.
While you might want to rush when putting this together in your Nursery, take your time as a life is at stake and surely that’s worth an extra few minutes.
Setting up your Echo device
Ideally, you should position your Echo device near to your baby. If you’re using an Echo Show or Echo Spot, then you’ll want to try a few different angles to ensure the camera can film your newborn.
For an Echo Dot, it’s best to place it next to the crib as this will provide the best possible audio. Just ensure it can’t fall into the crib and harm your baby.
With your device comfortably positioned, you’ll want to plug it into the mains and check it’s connected to your Wi-Fi network.
If you’re planning on using two Echo devices, one in the baby’s room and the other in your bedroom, then you want to check that both Echo devices are both registered under the same account.
Install the Alexa App
With your device ready to use, you’ll next need to download and install the Alexa App to a smartphone or device.
Even if you plan to use two Echo devices as a baby monitor, it’s still worth having the app on your phone and taking a few minutes to configure it. This way, you can check up on your little one regardless of your location.
Make life easier by naming your device!
Imagine trying to remember which of the multitude of Echo devices to call when you’re shattered from caring for your baby. It’s bound to cause frustration! Thankfully, renaming your Echo device is easy and can help you immeasurably.
You could name your Echo devices to correspond to their location. the room’s name in which they are going to be. For example, you can label one as ‘Baby’s Room’ and the other as ‘Fire TV’ or ‘Kitchen’.
To change the device name:
- Open Alexa from your smartphone.
- Click on those three short lines at the top to the left. Scroll down to find ‘Alexa Device.’
- Now, find the device you need to rename or name for the first time and tap it.
- Tap ‘Edit Name.’ In the box that pops up, type in the name you want to use.
Activate the Drop In feature
The final step is to enable ‘Calling and Messaging’ on all the Echo devices you plan to use for your video baby monitor. This takes about a minute.
As your smart device has already recognized your Echo Show or Stop, you only need to change two settings on the app.
- From the Alexa screen, choose the renamed device and tap ‘Communications.’
- It’s probably disabled. So you’ll need to toggle it to the on position.
- Choose ‘My Household’ at this point so that the other Alexa-enabled devices can communicate with that one.
If you’ve got small children or babies, you’ll want to check the Alexa device in their room to ensure it’s working and safe. It’s best to set the volume on low as this ensures you won’t wake the baby when you use the Drop In feature.
If you have multiple Echo devices within your smart home, you’ll need to repeat the steps for each.
Testing your Amazon Echo baby monitor system
After getting your Echo devices and Alexa working together, you’ll want to test your baby monitor system. Of course, you’ll want to do this when your little one is awake!
Start in the nursery and try to make a call from your Echo device to your smartphone/tablet with the Alexa app. The call should come through quickly and should automatically connect. If this is successful, then try calling another Echo or Alexa-enabled device within your home.
Next, with your smartphone, ask Alexa to call the Echo unit in your baby’s bedroom. It should connect automatically, allowing you to view the crib. By trying to make calls each way, you properly test the system, ensuring you don’t have to worry later.
Trying calling from your neighbour’s home
What makes the Amazon Echo devices truly a great baby monitor is that you can connect with them from anywhere with a Wi-Fi connection. So, it’s worth testing this, before you need them.
Just imagine being on a date or doing the weekly shop and being able to monitor your baby from your phone. Well, the Drop In feature allows you to do this, just as long as you have Wi-Fi! So have a bit of fun testing your baby monitor from a neighbour’s home.
Finding the ideal camera angle
If you’re using an Echo Show or Echo Spot, then you can use the Alexa app to move the camera, turn on night vision, and even play lullabies. All of these features make caring for your newborn far easier.
Plus if you’re using an 3rd party Wi-Fi camera such as the Blink Mini, then it worth experimenting with it and testing out different angles and the zoom function.
So, can Amazon Echo be used as a baby monitor?
The right baby monitor can help make your life far easier and Amazon’s Alexa can make it even easier. Using your phone and an Echo device, you can easily monitor your baby at night and during naps. Plus as they grow, you can check on them playing and even notify your kids that tea is ready!
As most underestimate the power of Alexa, you might not be aware that it can play lullabies or ambient sounds that will soothe your baby. Simply, ask Alexa using the app on your phone and she’ll do the rest! Not to mention the plethora of Alexa skills you can download and use.
Before you run out and buy any baby monitor, consider using your Echo devices, such as the Echo Show/Dot/Spot with the Alexa app. Using this system, you can watch or hear your sleeping baby, no matter where you are.
If you already have a Google Home product and wonder if you can use that as a baby monitor, then start with Can I use the Google Nest Hub as a baby monitor? as this should answer all of your questions!