Customers of mobile operator Vodafone UK have just become some of the first in the world to be able to make and receive calls via Amazon Echo (Alexa) smart speaker devices from any of their contacts via their existing mobile phone plan, which is thanks to their new OneNumber feature (free for all Red pay monthly customers).
At present if you want to make a call via Amazon’s smart speakers then you’re either restricted to calling other Echo owners or you can make use of the Skype skill to link your account. But now Vodafone customers can also link their mobile number to their Alexa account and enjoy hands-free calling from their mobile plan (“Alexa, call Joe“).
Once linked you’ll still be able to call even if your mobile phone is out of action and it also supports calls to the emergency services. Customers can choose which of their Echo devices will ring and they can turn inbound ringing on or off, any time they choose. OneNumber users can also share their mobile plan’s allowance of data, minutes and texts with multiple devices (at present this seems to include Alexa and Apple Watches).
How to Get Vodafone Calling Setup (Alexa App for iOS/Android)
* Open the Alexa app and select Menu
* Select Settings
* Select Communication, then hit Vodafone
* Select your free subscription
* Confirm your emergency address
* Linking will take place automatically
Admittedly linking your mobile plan to an Amazon Echo might not be terribly wise if you have children in the house and want to prevent abuse of the feature.
Max Taylor, Consumer Director at Vodafone UK, said:
“We are of course proud to be the first to offer this service globally but more importantly provide another easy way for our customers to stay connected. Vodafone UK customers can now tap into their mobile call allowances, doing away with their landlines, and through an integrated address book make or receive calls over Alexa devices in the home.”