Seven Useful Alexa Features for Your Amazon Echo

In case you do not already know, you can control Alexa’s various features right from your desktop, iPhone, or Android smartphone.

RAYMOND OGLESBY @RaymondOglesby2
November 3, 2022

This is for the desktop, iPhone, and Android. Screenshots are from iPhone XR

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Manage Alexa

In case you do not already know, you can control Alexa’s various features right from your desktop, iPhone, or Android smartphone. This allows you to tweak various setting options for your Echo without needing physical access to your device. You can manage everything from reminders and alarms to connected smart home devices. Refer to the below image:

Echo 1
Accessing Alexa Settings

On your desktop, you can use the Amazon Alexa website to do that, though it’s worth noting that the web implementation is not as robust as it used to be. You will have a better experience using the official Alexa mobile app on iPhone and Android.

Alexa Voice Tempo

If you find Alexa’s speech too fast or too slow, you can ask her to adjust her speaking speed. Simply say “Alexa, speak slower” or “Alexa, speak faster” and she will obey your command.

That will allow you to listen to certain words carefully, or go through everything quickly if you like to get your information fast.

Alexa Brief Mode

Sometimes, Alexa’s answers are too verbose. She might keep saying little things that you will eventually find annoying. Fortunately, there’s a way around it.

Enter Brief Mode, an Alexa feature that makes the virtual assistant keep her responses shorter. When this mode is enabled, Alexa will not speak as many words as she normally does. You can enable the mode by accessing the Alexa website, heading into:

Settings > Alexa Voice Responses

and enabling Brief Mode. See the below image:

Echo 2
Enabling Brief Mode

On the same page, you can make Alexa whisper her responses by enabling the Whisper Mode option.

Alexa Commute

Alexa can let you know what kind of traffic you will meet on your way to your office. As long as you have specified your To and From addresses in Alexa, you can get your commute’s traffic details. See the following image:

Echo 3
Commute info

If you have not already, you can configure your To and From addresses in the

Settings > Traffic

menu on the Alexa website.

Alexa Reminder App

It’s easy to forget your important tasks in this busy life. Setting up a reminder for each of your tasks in a mobile reminder app is also cumbersome.

Fortunately, you can use your Alexa assistant as a reminder tool. Simply ask Alexa when you would like to be reminded and about what or type in a reminder, and she will make sure to send you a notification at the specified time. Refer to the below image:

Echo 4
Enter and Save your reminder

Alexa Security Updates

Alexa offers a security feature called Guard to help you keep a check on your home when you are away. This feature listens to certain sounds, like those of breaking glass and smoke alarms going off.

When Alexa detects those sounds, you get a notification as well as a short audio clip of the sound, letting you know something’s not right at your home.

You can activate Alexa’s Guard feature from the

More > Settings > Guard

menu in the Alexa mobile app. You can purchase the Guard Plus feature for a fee if you would like emergency authorities to be notified when those sounds play at your home. See the below image:

Echo 5
Accessing Guard

Alexa Echo as a Bluetooth Speaker

Last but not least, you can use your Alexa-enabled Amazon Echo as a Bluetooth speaker. This way, you can connect any of your Bluetooth-enabled devices to your Echo and play your favorite music.

You may want to use this feature when your favorite music app is not supported by Alexa, or when you prefer to play music from your phone or your desktop. You can pair your phone or desktop with your Amazon Echo by simply asking “Alexa, pair.”

Those are some of the Alexa features you can use to make your Amazon Echo device even more useful.

Quote For the Day

I might love my e-reader, but I’d never pass up the chance to browse real books.

Nichole Chase

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Author’s E-Book

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The author’s Vietnam eBook on the Battle for Tra Bong Vietnam: Events and Aftermath

How to Remove a Credit Card from Your Amazon Account on Mobile

If your credit card has expired, or you simply do not wish to use it for Amazon purchases, it’s easy to remove your credit cards as well as any other payment methods from your Amazon account on a mobile phone. Let’s see how this is done.

RAYMOND OGLESBY @RaymondOglesby2
March 10, 2022

If your credit card has expired, or you simply do not wish to use it for Amazon purchases, it’s easy to remove your credit cards as well as any other payment methods from your Amazon account on a mobile phone. Let’s see how this is done.

Note: Keep in mind that removing a payment method does not cancel any open orders that use that payment method.

This is for mobile phones using Amazon. Screenshots are from iPhone XR

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Copyright Scott Adams, Inc./Distributed by Universal Uclick for UFS

To get rid of an unused payment method from your phone, first, open the Amazon app.

In the Amazon app’s bottom bar, tap the User icon. Refer to the below image:

Amazon Pay 1
Selecting the User icon

Next, scroll down the page to the Your Account section, then tap Your Payments. See the below image:

Amazon Pay 2
Selecting Your Payments option

Now, choose the credit card or any other payment method to remove. See the following image:

Amazon Pay 3
Selecting a credit card to remove

Next, at the top right-hand corner, tap Edit. Refer to the below image:

Amazon Pay 4
Selecting to Edit the credit card

Now, scroll the Edit Payment Method page to the bottom then tap Remove From Wallet. See the below image:

Amazon Pay 5
Selecting to remove the credit card

Next, tap Confirm in the Remove Confirmation prompt. See the following image:

Amazon Pay 6
Confirm your removal

And Amazon has now removed your selected payment method.

You may want to check Google Chrome as well if you have saved an expired or unwanted credit card there.

Quote For the Day

You’ve got to be before you can do and do before you can have.

Zig Ziglar

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Author’s E-book

You can access the e-book from a Kindle device, the Kindle App for the desktop or smartphone, which is a free app.

The author’s Vietnam eBook on the Battle for Tra Bong Vietnam: Events and Aftermath

How to Check Your Amazon Gift Card Balance

Not sure if you have sufficient funds to buy that item on Amazon? If so, it’s easy to check your gift card balance on both the Amazon website and the Amazon mobile app, as well as the history of cards you have redeemed. Let’s find out.

RAYMOND OGLESBY @RaymondOglesby2
December 21, 2021

Not sure if you have sufficient funds to buy that item on Amazon? If so, it’s easy to check your gift card balance on both the Amazon website and the Amazon mobile app, as well as the history of cards you have redeemed. Let’s find out.

This is for devices using Amazon

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Use the Amazon Website

If you are on a Windows, Mac, Linux, or Chromebook computer, use the official Amazon website to see the available gift card balance in your account.

First, open a web browser on your computer and launch the Amazon site. Sign in to your account on the site.

Next, in Amazon’s top-right corner, hover your mouse over the Account & Lists menu to see an expanded menu. Refer to the below image:

Gift Card 1
Accessing Account & Lists menu option

Now, in the expanded menu, under Your Account, click Account. See the below image:

Gift Card 2
Accessing Your Account

Next, on the Your Account page that opens, click Gift cards. See the following image:

Gift Card 3
Accessing your Gift cards

Now, on the page that opens, right next to Your Gift Card Balance, you will see the gift card balance currently available in your account. Refer to the below image:

Gift Card 4
Viewing your Gift Card balance

Note! You can redeem a gift card by clicking the Redeem a Gift Card button, entering the key, and clicking Apply to your balance button.

If you would like to view the values of gift cards that you have redeemed in your account, scroll down the page to see that information. See the following image:

Gift Card 5
Viewing your Gift Card history

Use the Amazon Mobile App

If you are on an iPhone, iPad, or Android phone, use the Amazon mobile app to check your gift card balance.

First, launch the Amazon app on your phone. Sign in to your account if you have not already. Then, at the bottom of the app, tap the user icon. Refer to the below image:

Gift Card 6
Accessing the User icon

Next, on the account page that opens, scroll down to the Gift Card Balance section. Here, you will see the gift card balance available to use in your Amazon account. See the below image:

Gift Card 7
Viewing your Gift Card Balance

Now, to view the gift cards that you have added to your account so far, then next to Gift Card Balance, tap the Manage option. See the following image:

Gift Card 8
Accessing to Manage your Gift Card

Note! You can redeem a gift card by clicking the Redeem Gift Card button, entering the key, and taping Apply to your balance button.

Next, scroll down the page to the Your Balance activity section. Here, you will see all your redeemed gift cards along with their values. Refer to the below image:

Gift Card 9
Your Gift Card history

And that’s how you know if your gift card balance can buy a certain item on Amazon.

Quote For the Day

Faith is trust in ultimate meaning.

Viktor E Frankl

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The author’s Vietnam eBook on the Battle for Tra Bong Vietnam: Events and Aftermath

How to Set a Passcode For Your Amazon Kindle

If you are a private reader, do not want your kids (or anyone else) having free access to your books, or just want to password protect your Kindle, it’s really easy to do.

RAYMOND OGLESBY @RaymondOglesby2
October 21, 2021

If you are a private reader, do not want your kids (or anyone else) having free access to your books, or just want to password protect your Kindle, it’s really easy to do. Let’s explore this feature.

This is for the Kindle

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Copyright Scott Adams, Inc./Distributed by Universal Uclick for UFS

How to Set a Kindle Passcode

First, on the Home screen, tap the three little dots (the hamburger menu) in the upper-right hand corner. Refer to below image:

Kindle 1
Accessing the Hamburger menu

Next, tap Settings in the p0p- up menu. See below image:

Kindle 2
Accessing Settings

Now, tap Device Options. See following image:

Kindle 3
Accessing Device Options

Next, you will see a list of options, tap Device Passcode. Refer to below image:

Kindle 4
Accessing Device Passcode

Now, enter your Passcode between 1 and 12 digits long, then enter it again to confirm, and then tap OK. See below image:

Kindle 5
Entering and confirming a Passcode

When you unlock your Kindle, you will be prompted to enter your passcode, then tap OK.. See following image:

Kindle 6
Entering a Passcode upon unlocking your Kindle

How to Turn Off or Change a Kindle Passcode

Go to your:

  • Settings > Device Options > Device Passcode

To cancel your Passcode, tap

  • Turn Off Passcode > enter your passcode > OK

To change your Passcode, tap

  • Change Passcode > enter your current passcode > OK

and then enter and confirm your new Passcode.

Kindle 7
Cancel or Change a Passcode

Forget Your Kindle Passcode?

In your Settings, there is a Reset option which you can try. If you are unable to access this option, there’s a special way to reset a locked Kindle.

  • On a 6th Generation Kindle or newer, enter “111222777” as the Passcode, and then tap OK.
  • On a 5th Generation Kindle, enter “resetmykindle” as the Passcode, and then press the Enter key.

You will need to log in to your Amazon account and re-download all your books, audiobooks, and files.

Quote For the Day

If God treats you well by teaching you a disastrous lesson, you never forget it.

Ray Bradbury

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The author’s Vietnam eBook on the Battle for Tra Bong Vietnam: Events and Aftermath

Celebrate 300 Posts Giveaway

We are giving away one (1) $50.00 Amazon Gift Card to one of our followers in celebration of 300 blog posts. Its simple to enter. Just send an email to:

We are giving away one (1) $50.00 Amazon Gift Card to one of our followers in celebration of 300 blog posts. It’s simple to enter. Just send an email to:

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with a Subject line of:

300 Posts Giveaway

and in the body text, enter:

I would like to enter the 300 blog posts giveaway.

My follower name is __________. (Optional)

Your email must be received by midnight September 23, 2021. The winner will be announced and notified in a random drawing on September 24, 2021. Only one entry per follower. Tell your friends and relatives to start following TechSavvy.Life.

That’s it. Thank you for being a follower and hope you enjoy the blog posts.

Celebrate 300 Posts Giveaway

We are giving away one (1) $50.00 Amazon Gift Card to one of our followers in celebration of 300 blog posts. Its simple to enter. Just send an email to:

We are giving away one (1) $50.00 Amazon Gift Card to one of our followers in celebration of 300 blog posts. It’s simple to enter. Just send an email to:

wrojr@cox.net

with a Subject line of:

300 Posts Giveaway

and in the body text, enter:

I would like to enter the 300 blog posts giveaway.

My follower name is __________. (Optional)

Your email must be received by midnight September 23, 2021. The winner will be announced and notified in a random drawing on September 24, 2021. Only one entry per follower. Tell your friends and relatives to start following TechSavvy.Life.

That’s it. Thank you for being a follower and hope you enjoy the blog posts.

How to See Amazon Kindle Book Page Numbers

When you read paperback and hardcover books, you use page numbers for tracking progress and for discussing parts of the book. But, by default, Amazon Kindle only shows you your location in the book.

RAYMOND OGLESBY @RaymondOglesby2
September 16, 2021

When you read paperback and hardcover books, you use page numbers for tracking progress and for discussing parts of the book. But, by default, Amazon Kindle only shows you your location in the book. Let’s find out how to see it’s page numbers.

This is for the Kindle

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Copyright Scott Adams, Inc./Distributed by Universal Uclick for UFS

If a Kindle book has a Print Length section on its Amazon page, it means you will be able to see real page numbers as you move through the book. Refer to below image:

Book 1
Viewing Print Length

Once enabled, page numbers will be visible in the bottom left-hand corner of the reading screen (replacing the Location or Reading Progress).

First, navigate to the Your Library section in the Kindle e-book reader. See below image:

Book 2
Selecting an e-book

Next, tap a book to start reading. See following image:

Book 3
Tap a book to read

Now, tap in the top part of the screen to reveal the toolbar. Refer to below image:

Book 4
Reveal the toolbar

Next, select the “Aa” button. See below image:

Book 5
Tap the text option

Now, tap the More tab and select the Reading Progress option. See following image:

Book 6
Tap More and Reading Progress options

Next, select the Page in Book option. If this option is blacked out, it means that real page numbers will not be available for this book on Kindle. Refer to below image:

Book 7
Select Page in book option

Now, go back to the reading view. In the bottom left -hand corner of your screen, you will now see the page number. See below image:

Book 8

View the page number

You can quickly cycle through all the Reading Progress options (Page in Book, Time Left in Chapter, Time Left in Book, Location in Book, and Note) by tapping the text in the bottom left-hand corner of your screen. See following image:

Book 9
View the Reading Progress options

Quote For the Day

You can’t try to do things; you simply must do them.

Ray Bradbury

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I Would Like to Hear From You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Just send an email to contact@techsavvy.life. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help us out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

The author’s Vietnam eBook on the Battle for Tra Bong Vietnam: Events and Aftermath

Celebrate 300 Posts Giveaway

We are giving away one (1) $50.00 Amazon Gift Card to one of our followers in celebration of 300 blog posts. Its simple to enter. Just send an email to:

We are giving away one (1) $50.00 Amazon Gift Card to one of our followers in celebration of 300 blog posts. It’s simple to enter. Just send an email to:

wrojr@cox.net

with a Subject line of:

300 Posts Giveaway

and in the body text, enter:

I would like to enter the 300 blog posts giveaway.

My follower name is __________. (Optional)

Your email must be received by midnight September 23, 2021. The winner will be announced and notified in a random drawing on September 24, 2021. Only one entry per follower. Tell your friends and relatives to start following TechSavvy.Life.

That’s it. Thank you for being a follower and hope you enjoy the blog posts.

Celebrate 300 Posts Giveaway

We are giving away one (1) $50.00 Amazon Gift Card to one of our followers in celebration of 300 blog posts. Its simple to enter. Just send an email to:

We are giving away one (1) $50.00 Amazon Gift Card to one of our followers in celebration of 300 blog posts. It’s simple to enter. Just send an email to:

wrojr@cox.net

with a Subject line of:

300 Posts Giveaway

and in the body text, enter:

I would like to enter the 300 blog posts giveaway.

My follower name is __________. (Optional)

Your email must be received by midnight September 23, 2021. The winner will be announced and notified in a random drawing on September 24, 2021. Only one entry per follower. Tell your friends and relatives to start following TechSavvy.Life.

That’s it. Thank you for being a follower and hope you enjoy the blog posts.

Celebrate 300 Posts Giveaway

We are giving away one (1) $50.00 Amazon Gift Card to one of our followers in celebration of 300 blog posts. Its simple to enter. Just send an email to:

We are giving away one (1) $50.00 Amazon Gift Card to one of our followers in celebration of 300 blog posts. It’s simple to enter. Just send an email to:

wrojr@cox.net

with a Subject line of:

300 Posts Giveaway

and in the body text, enter:

I would like to enter the 300 blog posts giveaway.

My follower name is __________. (Optional)

Your email must be received by midnight September 23, 2021. The winner will be announced and notified in a random drawing on September 24, 2021. Only one entry per follower. Tell your friends and relatives to start following TechSavvy.Life.

That’s it. Thank you for being a follower and hope you enjoy the blog posts.

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