Using Contact and Motion Sensors to Trigger Alexa Routines (DTH in post 97) (Official Amazon Feature)

Ty. I wonder if a camera’s motion sensing would be available for Alexa routines if it were connected to Alexa through Smartthings.

1 Like

I have my Ring Pro connected to Alexa through both the ring skill and SmartThings skill. Only the SmartThings device allows a motion based routine.


Good to know. Thanks.

Starting to see a few zigbee sensors appear on the list of echo plus compatible devices. :sunglasses:

Nothing cheap yet, though.

Cool :slight_smile: I don’t think this is smart enough yet though. I created a routine if garage entry door opens for Alexa to say random “I’m home” message… but she will also say welcome home when I leave :roll_eyes: Will have to play with a virtual switch + webcore to freak out the kiddos when they get home from school :smirk:Welcome home [name], did you have a good day at school? Stay out of the pantry and get your homework done!!!

@JDRoberts, you will get full credit for this in the morning around 5:15 when my wife walks into the kitchen to get her first cup of coffee.1%20-%20100%20Bite%20Sized%20Sound%20Effects%20by%20Care%20Free%20Sounds%20and%20Music%20on


In case anyone else doesn’t see their sensors, I had to disable the smartthings skill and then enable it again in order to get my sensors to show up.

1 Like

To make it smarter, you can use the same approach that we use with IFTTT. That is, take advantage of the complexity that smartthings can support.

So you create a virtual contact sensor, and use webcore to set it to open only when the real contact sensor opens and all your other conditions are met like day of the week and time of day and if A particular person is home and all that kind of stuff.

Have the echo routine run off the virtual contact sensor but not the real one.

We do the same thing with IFTTT by creating a virtual switch to proxy a real switch and then adding the conditions around it. :sunglasses:


$21 for a contact sensor is a decent price

1 Like

That one is new since I looked. They’ve been adding them pretty quick, so we’ll have to see what else shows up. But I’m very pleased by this, as you know, I prefer zigbee for battery operated sensors and this opens up a big market. :sunglasses:

1 Like

If I go into SmartThings Automation and then to Amazon Echo, my sensors are listed there. However, if I try to verbally ask Alexa anything about one of them, such as temperature, etc, Alexa responds it can’t find any such sensor.

Anyway, in an effort to get this working, if I disable the Alexa skill, will I need to rebuild all my groups?

You won’t need to rebuild your groups, but be advised that once you relink your account it will add in every ST device you own. I made that mistake yesterday and spent 2 hours cleaning up my account and my wife’s account. However, the end result was, everything now works. One thing you will have to do is just go back thru each group and click edit then save.

1 Like

If you go through the Alexa SmartApp in SmartThings you can tell it which devices it can access and which it can’t. I, for example, don’t give the Alexa app access to my EcoBee since it already has access directly. Also took away the siren…hate to say something like “Alexa turn on the study” and have it think I said siren.

With this change I cleaned up what it had access to, deleted all the devices in Alexa, and re-added fresh. It was time for a cleanup anyway.

Thanks! I just completed the disable/re-enable and all is well. You’re correct about not having to re-add my groups. They were all there when I re-enabled the app. It also added every ST device to its list, but I’m OK with that. However, I did not need to go back thru each group to click edit then save. For me, they all came back and worked as before without me doing anything.

1 Like

Has anyone successful triggered an Alexa Routine with a simulated contact sensor?

I have successfully triggered Alexa Routines with physical contact and motion sensors, but not a simulated contact sensor. I am trying to trigger an Alexa Routine based using a simulated contact sensor with the state being set with WebCore. On the Alexa App I see my simulated contact sensor and can see the state change but for some reason the Routine is not being triggered even though I can see that the contact sensor has changed to open on the Alexa App.

I successfully created the exact same Alexa Routine using a door sensor and it triggered no problem. I have tired multiple times creating new ones and the physical sensors consistently work and the simulated sensors consistently display the correct state in the Alexa App but the Routine does not trigger. Before I try to contact Amazon Support, I wanted to see if anyone else is seeing the same issue or not.


So the smartthigs Alexa app sees all my contact sensors (various brands). I select them, but Alexa says there are no new devices during discovery. Anyone, have a similar issue?

Yes, I’m using simulated contacts for each of my family members and use WebCore to change the contact state. The Alexa routines I set up are properly firing when we come and go.


Thanks for the confirmation. I guess I will start over and try again.

I had this issue the other week (nothing to do with this recent Alexa update to handle sensors). In my case I had to disable and re-enable the connection to Alexa in the Alexa app. My problem started when I changed over to the Samsung login. I believe I needed to basically reconnect Alexa with a new log in (now Samsung). I had the same issue with IFTTT.

Thanks, I’ll give it a try! Hopefully, all my groups remain, it would suck to have to redo them all.