Dinner's ready! Let your Amazon Echo devices tell the whole family

Dinner is ready, but little Jimmy is glued to his Call of Duty deathmatch and your partner is still working that spreadsheet in the home office. 

You could holler and shout up the stairs to corral the family, but Amazon wants its Amazon Echo smart speaker range to take the strain instead.

The new Alexa Announcements feature for the Echo range will let you record a message through your smart speaker, and have it broadcast around the home.

With the "Alexa, announce that..." or "Alexa, tell everyone..." commands, you'll be able to say, for instance "Alexa, tell everyone that dinner is ready" and have the "dinner is ready" part relayed in your voice to every Echo device on your network at once.

In-home intercom

It's worth noting that it's a one way system – those on the other end of the Echo will not be able to respond to the announcements, making it very much an instructional exchange.

But the point is to offer a complimentary feature to Alexa's existing communication options. The smart speakers can already make calls to other Alexa devices, while the Drop In feature lets you have a conversation with one other Alexa device in your home or with another person's device in your contacts book.

The Alexa Announcements feature rolls out today, and is compatible with all Echo generations, the Echo Dot, Echo Spot, Echo Plus and Echo Show.

Gerald Lynch

Gerald is Editor-in-Chief of iMore.com. Previously he was the Executive Editor for TechRadar, taking care of the site's home cinema, gaming, smart home, entertainment and audio output. He loves gaming, but don't expect him to play with you unless your console is hooked up to a 4K HDR screen and a 7.1 surround system. Before TechRadar, Gerald was Editor of Gizmodo UK. He is also the author of 'Get Technology: Upgrade Your Future', published by Aurum Press.