SmartThings Community

Alexa: Modifying the ST phrases?

#1

I have 2 thermostats, one is a Nest while the other is a CT100. Both can be controlled with Alexa however the phrases used for the CT100 is different (& undesirable) from that of the Nest. The set the temperature of the Nest I use the phrase Alexa, set Nest to 22 The CT100 I have to use Alexa, turn the Fireplace to 22 I prefer the former. Given that the Nest is its own skill and the CT100 is that of ST is there a way to revise within the ST skill the phrases used for this and other such devices?

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#2

Just a thought not sure it will work. Create a new group in the Alex app call FirplaceThermostat. Select just the CT100 to be in this group. Then ask “Alexa turn Fireplace Thermostat to 22 degrees.

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#3

I think that might work however it would not accomplish my goal. The CT100 already responds to Alexa, turn…… I would like it to respond to Alexa, set…… just like the Nest. The bottom line is, I am looking for some consistency between each of these devices.

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#4

You can come closer to what you are trying to do with EchoSistant. You can change the way you speak to Alexa via EchoSistant and SmartThings. However, I would wait until they release the new version:

Some things you can say:

Alexa, turn on the lights in the bedroom.
Alexa, turn off the ceiling fan in the bedroom.
Alexa, make it darker in the bedroom.

You can have sub groups within that room…
Alexa, turn on the bed lights in the bedroom.

And then there is feedback…
Alexa, are there any lights on in the bedroom?
Alexa, is there anyone in the bedroom?
Alexa, what is the temperature in the bedroom?
Alexa, is the ceiling fan on in the bedroom?

Or things like:

Me: Alexa what’s the temperature upstairs in my home?
Alexa: 74, anything else?
Me: it’s too hot
Alexa: ok, adjusting your temperature upstairs to 73

OR

Me: What’s the temperature in the master bedroom/family room?" (notice there is NO difference how you ask)
Alexa: 71, anything else?
Me: switch to CNN
Alexa: ok, starting Harmony activity

OR

here is favorite…

Me: What’s the temperature in the master bedroom/family room?"
Alexa: 71, anything else?
Me: is downstairs thermostat running?
Alexa: No, the downstairs thermostat is not running…

Here’s the thread for current version:

Here’s the thread for the future version on the way:

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(Franklin) #5

Since we are recommending our favorites, I would personally recommend Ask Alexa. The other app has very poor documentation. I just installed Ask Alexa and the documentation and install process are great, and it allows you to specify your invocation name and personalize your home.

Highly recommended!

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#6

What the OP is asking to do is not something that Ask Alexa does. That’s why it wasn’t recommended as an either or.

The use case they this OP is requesting cannot be accommodated in the same free form text without an invocation word. I have both installed so I know both capabilities, so your recommendation and what is being requested is not quite the same. It’s about attention to detail and the specific task they are asking for as granular as it may seem.

I wasn’t recommending a favorite. I was recommending the product that would best suit the use case requirements of this customer. Even though I prefer EchoSistant, if the use case was better served by Ask Alexa, I would have recommended it. Unbiased.

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(Franklin) #7

I get what @cdikland is asking. You seemed to imply that Echosistant can get rid of his invocation name. It can’t. And neither can Ask Alexa. Both can rename the invocation name to give the impression of no invocation name. I have SmartThings and Living Room as my invocation name in two different instances of my install and I say “turn on the heat in the living room” and it works great. I had to name my thermostat heat, but this works very well.

I’ll admit I’m bias…I tried Echosistant and could not get past the crappy instruction. Ask Alexa installed the first time without a hitch.

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#8

Are you asked if you want to do anything else after your initial Alexa command? Are you able to then say “it’s too hot” and the temperature automatically reduces?

I have my preference and as both products are great, depending on what I know a customer is asking for, I will send them in one direction over another based in what I believe will better serve their needs. It’s not about me saying “this is my favorite” as you so pointed out.

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(Franklin) #9

I got Ask Alexa to do just that without an invocation name. Using an Alexa routine tied to Ask Alexa I can say “Alexa it it hot in here” or “Alexa turn up the heat” and it activates a macro that does these functions. So that might be the answer this guy is looking for.

I have yet to find anything Ask Alexa can’t do either by itself or with a little work worth either WebCoRE or just the Alexa built-in routines.

Not dissing your choice, choice is good! I chose Ask Alexa and have no regrets.

I’m actually curious about something you said. If you can say you are “too hot” what if you said “it is not hot enough in here”? Do those do the same things and turn on the cooling? That wouldn’t be right. I think their claim of natural language is a bit exaggerated…it is natural for them…and hard coded in. I need flexibility in my setup as I have non-native In my house

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#10

Wasn’t a choice. It was a recommendation.

As part of the secondary command, you can. You aren’t curious enough because you had issues with documentation.
Time to move on. I made a recommendation to the OP. I didn’t say hey this is my favorite :joy:. It was based in what I think would work for this new customer. Also knowing some of the things that are coming in the new release, an even bigger reason why I made the recommendation. So you have the one product installed on your side, so don’t begin with what you think they can and can’t do. Enjoy what you have. :slight_smile:

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(Franklin) #11

I WAS curious because it wasn’t in the documentation. I agree…time to move on…

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#12

Thanks everyone. Guess I’ll try both EchoSistant and Ask Alexa:grinning:

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#13

Great approach!

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(Franklin) #14

Probably a good thing so you can decide for yourself!

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#15

It might change it by saying set. I just typed turn. I can chance my zen thermostat by saying Alexa set thermostat to 72deg.

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#16

Perfect!!! Worked like a charm

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