Life is a pain in the neck sometimes. Your alarm clock didn’t work this morning, and you’re late for work. Now, you’re stuck in traffic. It’s started raining, and you left home without an umbrella. Imagine if you could solve all these problems by uttering a word or two. Well, you can. “Hey, Google,” “Hey, Siri,” “Alexa” — these phrases will make your life just that little bit easier. Read on to find out why.
1. Turning Off Your Alarm Clock in the Morning
We get it, you’re not a morning person. Just rolling over to switch off your alarm in the morning is a challenge. Luckily for you, there’s a solution. Voice assistant apps like the Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa respond to your voice commands, so now you won’t have to move a muscle when turning off your morning alarm. Pretty impressive, right?
2. Opening the Car Garage
If you’re in a mad morning rush, opening your car garage seems more complicated than the Large Hadron Collider. The problem is, your hands are full, and you can’t find the garage remote. Take a deep breath, and ask Google or Alexa to open the door for you. Smart garage door openers sync with your smartphone or smart speaker so you open — and close — your door without breaking a sweat.
3. Saying “Happy Birthday” On Time
Unless you’re Rainman, it can be hard to remember important dates — birthdays, anniversaries, major milestones. I forgot my own best friend’s birthday just yesterday. Everyone is forgetful sometimes. One-third of people have completely forgotten their partner’s birthday in the past. Thankfully, voice assistants can remind you of all those special days in your calendar. Now, there’s no excuse to not send a quick birthday email. (Voice assistants can do that for you, too.)
4. Hailing a Taxi
Hailing a taxi can be a soul-destroying experience, especially if the weather is wet and windy. There are numerous ridesharing and taxi apps that sync with your smartphone and smart speaker, though, so you can catch a ride using just your voice.
5. Checking the Transit Schedule
Ask your Amazon Echo or Google Home device when your next bus arrives or flight leaves. It’s simple. You don’t need to spend ages on the internet checking transit schedules —just use your voice.
6. Rescheduling Meetings
Save your money on a personal assistant — use a digital voice assistant, instead. With Google Home or Amazon Echo, you can schedule meetings, reschedule meetings, cancel meetings, you name it. Voice assistants have access to the calendar apps on your phone or tablet, so you can optimize business productivity with a few simple words.
7. Checking Your Account Balance
Some banks let you sync your account with your smartphone or smart speaker. This way, you know just how much cash you have, wherever you are in the world. The result? You won’t have to wait hours on the phone trying to get through to a customer service assistant.
8. Setting Up Two-Factor Authentication
Hackers get their hands on millions of email accounts every year. Here in the United States, we had the most data breaches of any country in 2016 — a total of 1013. Don’t panic, though. Voice assistants let you set up two-factor authentication, which safeguards your valuable data and provides you with some much-needed peace of mind.
9. Telling Bedtime Stories
There’s nothing kids love more than a good bedtime story. But sometimes, you’re just too tired to read them “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” for the fifth time. Let your voice assistant become your temporary nanny — tell it to read your children a bedtime story, and they’ll fall asleep in no time!
10. Being Opinionated
Love a good debate? Your voice assistant will back you up. Ask it for a fact to support your argument or a statistic that will blow the minds of your friends and family.