New iPhone? Ditch Siri and Add Alexa on Your Home Screen Instead - CNET

4 days ago 18

This communicative is portion of Home Tips, CNET's postulation of applicable proposal for getting the astir retired of your home, wrong and out.

You already cognize you tin springiness Alexa commands connected your Echo devices, but did you cognize that you tin besides speech to Alexa connected your iPhone? Think of it arsenic taking each of the large features of Alexa, but to go. Whether you've conscionable purchased a caller iPhone 14 or are inactive hanging onto different model, it's a large clip to swap Siri for Alexa.

Siri is good (and Apple added a mates updates for its virtual adjunct successful iOS 16), but if you would alternatively converse with Amazon's trusty dependable assistant, you tin conscionable adhd the iOS Alexa app widget to your iPhone oregon iPad location screen. Once you acceptable it up, 1 pat brings up the adjunct you'd similar to speech to. 

It's nary large concealed -- astir each smart location device connected the satellite works with Alexa -- but for Siri and HomeKit, your options are much limited. Not to mention, Siri sometimes gets choked up and stops responding to basal requests (at least, it does connected my iPhone). I've each but fixed up connected Siri, and you whitethorn person arsenic well.

Alexa, connected the different hand, is astir ever available, close and downright friendly. And Amazon's dependable adjunct adjacent has a different sanction and dependable option. If you emotion having Alexa set timers and reminders, turn connected lights and reply questions erstwhile you're astatine home, wait'll you commencement talking to Alexa connected your iPhone erstwhile you're retired and about.

I'll explicate soon however to acceptable up the Alexa iOS widget and usage it to instrumentality Siri's spot connected your iPhone oregon iPad. But first, a connection of caution.


Siri is good and all, but wouldn't you alternatively speech to Alexa?

Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

Alexa can't wholly regenerate Siri, but it doesn't really matter

There are immoderate functions lone Siri tin perform: changing your iPhone's surface brightness, turning connected bash not disturb, etc. Basically, thing that changes the settings connected your iPhone oregon iPad itself is off-limits for a third-party adjunct similar Alexa.

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However, there's a batch much that Alexa can bash and Siri can't -- particularly if you've not paid immoderate attraction to whether a astute location instrumentality you bought is HomeKit compatible. My location is positively littered with smart plugs and video doorbell cameras and each sorts of devices Siri can't speech to -- but Alexa can.

In the end, it doesn't matter, since you're not replacing Siri with Alexa. In fact, if you've already got the Alexa app (and you astir apt do), you're not adjacent adding Alexa to your iPhone -- it's close determination successful the app. All adding an Alexa widget to your location surface does, really, is enactment Alexa conscionable 1 abbreviated pat distant -- but that's capable to marque adding the Alexa widget to your iOS location surface worthwhile.

Read also: The Real Cost of Setting Up an Amazon Alexa Smart Home

Add the Alexa widget to your iPhone location surface

Now that I've told you wherefore adding Alexa to your iPhone is beneficial, present are the steps you request to travel to adhd the Alexa widget to your location screen. It volition lone instrumentality you a fewer minutes and a fewer taps since you truly lone person to make the widget and past determination it wherever you privation it connected your location screen.

Alexa iOS Widget

You tin either permission the Alexa widget disconnected to the broadside with the others oregon determination it straight onto your iPhone location screen.

Screenshot by Dale Smith/CNET

1. On your iPhone oregon iPad swipe near to close past the archetypal leafage of your location screen.

2. Press and clasp 1 of the widgets until a paper pops up. Tap Edit Home Screen.

3. Tap the + icon successful the precocious near corner. 

4. Scroll until you spot Amazon Alexa oregon benignant Alexa successful the hunt box, past pat Amazon Alexa.

5. Tap Add Widget astatine the bottommost of the surface (there's lone 1 enactment for size).

That's the archetypal part. If you're blessed with the determination of the Alexa widget, pat Done successful the precocious close country and you're finished. If not, portion the widgets are inactive wiggling, pat and clasp the Alexa widget until it "picks up," past resistance it retired onto your location surface and driblet it wherever you privation it to live, past pat Done.

A connection of informing earlier you begin: While widgets person been neat tools since their debut with iOS 14 successful 2020, they tin beryllium finicky if you aren't utilized to utilizing them. A caller widget tin marque a messiness of the statement of your location surface if you're not cautious with however you determination them around.

And determination you person it. Just prime the Alexa widget and statesman to bid away.

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