Starting today, Amazon’s Alexa can change the color of lighting in a room. Users can set the lighting in their home by color or enable mood settings like reading or daylight. You can also simply ask for warmer or cooler color.
These additions to the Smart Home Skill API give you the ability to control Philips Hue, SmartThings, TP-Link, and LIFX lightbulbs with your voice.
The new feature, announced today in an Amazon Developers blog post, lets you issue commands like “Alexa, make my lights orange” or “Alexa, turn the living room to blue.”
Smart bulbs from these companies have always been able to change colors, and you could configure color or temperature using apps provided by makers of the devices. The difference now is that you can use voice commands to your Alexa device instead of opening an app.
The ability to change the color of a room with your voice is one of a series of changes Amazon made this week to aid developers. Earlier this week the company released a skills analytics dashboard for tracking skill performance and gave skills the capacity to request a user’s location. Also this week, Alexa skills no longer require downloads, a change first uncovered by CNET reporter Taylor Martin.
In addition to support for lighting based on mood or a party, smart lightbulbs are also being used for home security, to sync with music (sorta), and to indicate when your favorite Twitch video gamer starts livestreaming. Sales teams are also using a combination of Alexa and colored lightbulbs to alert teams if sales numbers are high or low.
Hands-free lighting color control is currently only available in the United States, with the feature coming to Alexa users in Germany and the United Kingdom next.