Meet Alexa Guard, the smartest house guard by Amazon

Alexa can recite your Fitbit data to you.                  Tyler Lizenby  CNET

Alexa can recite your Fitbit data to you. Tyler Lizenby CNET

Smart home security is a really lucrative market but it looks like Amazon is getting ahead of the curve by rolling out a bunch of advanced home security features enabled by Alexa and available on Echo devices - for free. To address the concern of smart homeowners when they leave their abode all by itself, Amazon has introduced Alexa Guard.

Then, the next time you exit the house, simply say, "Alexa, I'm leaving", to set Guard to Away mode. You can select which sounds are of interest, for example, the sound of breaking glass or a smoke alarm going off. Alexa will respond to such audio events by sending a Smart Alert for you to act upon along with a short audio recording of what occurred.

Amazon's Alexa Guard include is now taking off in the U.S., following a welcome just see that kept going a couple of months.

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Alexa Guard is free for all Echo users and is rolling out to U.S. users today.

You can also ask Alexa to play Beats 1 to hear Apple Music's global livestream including in-depth artist interviews- all completely ad-free.

Amazon's Echo devices can now keep an eye, or rather an ear, on your home while you're away.

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Alexa Guard can also switch your smart lights on and off, mimicking your normal usage to make it seem like you're at home.

Using Alexa Guard doesn't require additional hardware, but it must be enabled within the Alexa app and then activated. It delivers down-firing, 100W of bass through its 6-inch woofer, and you can pair it with an Echo or two to create a 2.1 stereo system.

When enabled, Guard initiates what Amazon calls Smart Alerts. When you return home, say "Alexa, I'm home" to turn the feature off again. Today, a bit more than half a year after it was first revealed, Alexa Guard is starting its roll out to Echo owners. Yes there are limitations and it's not meant to replace essential home security systems in any way, but extra features such as these are always welcome. In fact, if you have a professional monitoring service through Ring or ADT, you can forward Smart Alerts to your security company.

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