Amazon Echo devices, equipped with the iconic, cloud-based voice service Alexa, have grown increasingly popular for their extreme convenience. Amazon has even made an Echo device specifically for kids. With just the sound of their voice, Alexa users can listen to music, online shop, control other smart products around the house like lightbulbs and TVs, amongst thousands of other features available on the device. But as nifty as these devices are, they do carry some features that make parents nervous. Fortunately, there are Alexa parental controls that can help.
Why do you need parental controls for Alexa? As of the beginning of this year, more than100 million Echo devices have been sold. Amazon is only looking to grow that number by expanding its already lengthy Amazon Echo device line and adding to its extensive list of abilities. With the knowledge that you can’t delete your child’s Alexa recordings, and other privacy concerns, it’s important that parents know what they can and can’t control.
Here’s how to ensure your child doesn’t stay up all night to a symphony of notifications or order hundreds of dollars in chocolate.
Create a Voice Purchasing Password (or Turn It Off)
To prevent your child from ordering whatever they want from Amazon, you can activate a PIN that will be required in order to confirm every attempted purchase.
To activate the mandatory 4-digit voice PIN from the Alexa app:
- From the main menu, open Settings
- Go to Alexa Account
- Tap Voice Purchasing
- Toggle Voice Code
To turn off voice purchasing completely, proceed the same way but toggle Purchase by Voice instead of Voice Code.
Enable the Explicit Filter For Music
Keep your little one from hearing any nasty words while they listen to music by turning on the explicit filter:
- Go to Settings
- Tap Music
- Toggle Explicit Filter
Schedule Do Not Disturb Mode
So your kid doesn’t stay up all night to the sound of receiving calls and texts, enable Do Not Disturb mode:
- Open the Alexa app’s Settings
- Select the settings for the desired Amazon Echo device
- Tap Do Not Disturb and toggle the feature On
- Toggle Scheduled
- Specify the times you would like Do Not Disturb mode to begin and end
Alexa Parental Controls — Sources
Tech Advisor: How to Set Up Parental Controls on Amazon Echo
The Verge: Amazon Says 100 Million Alexa Devices Have Been Sold — What’s Next?
Tom’s Guide: How to Kid-Proof Your Amazon Echo