Vodafone customers can now make and receive calls through their Amazon Echo speakers, using the Alexa voice assistant. By simply linking their mobile phone number to their Alexa account, Vodafone customers will be able to call any of their contacts, hands free, using their existing mobile phone plan.
So whether you are busy with housework or cooking a meal, you won’t have to stop what you’re doing and pick up the phone.
Customers can decide which of their Echo devices will ring, and they can turn inbound ringing on or off any time they choose.
It even works if you have lost your smartphone or it has run out of battery, and if you’re in trouble you can call emergency service numbers directly through your Alexa speaker.
“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,” said Max Taylor, Consumer Director at Vodafone UK.
“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.”
The service works using Vodafone OneNumber, which is free for all Red pay monthly customers. OneNumber allows customers to share their mobile plan’s allowance of data, minutes and texts with multiple devices such as their Alexa or smartwatch.
To make or receive calls with Vodafone OneNumber on an Alexa-enabled device, all you have to do is ask. For example: “Alexa, call Kayleigh”.
Alexa users who are not on Vodafone, or don’t have a OneNumber mobile plan, can also make outbound phone calls to most mobile and landline numbers in the UK, US, Canada and Mexico through their Echo devices or the Alexa app.
“This is just one more way Amazon is continuing to expand our Alexa Communication service, making it even easier for our customers to stay in touch with family and friends around the world,” said Brian Oliver, Director of Alexa Communication
The news comes ahead of the launch of Vodafone’s 5G network, which the company claims will be 4 to 5 times faster than its 4G network, offering download speeds of up to 400Mbps.
The network will be switched on in Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, Manchester, Liverpool and London on July 3, before launching in other UK cities later this summer.