4 Ways Voice Assistants Can Improve Your Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving is on Thursday and while the holiday can be a lot of fun, it comes with plenty of potential stress. Voice assistants can be a big help during the festivities, thanks to new features and voice apps churned out by developers. We’ve picked out some of the best ways a voice assistant can help make sure your Thanksgiving goes down as smoothly as a perfectly prepared turkey.
Clearing Up Arguments
Answering questions is one of the most frequently used features of all voice assistants. That can be a big help if a family discussion over trivia gets heated. Ask any of the major voice assistants and the debate over where the pilgrims landed is over. They can even help resolve questions with less-concrete answers. Alexa and Google Assistant can flip an electronic coin by request if it’s a matter of who goes first in playing Trivial Pursuit. If it’s a question of taste, you can always ask the voice assistant their own opinion. For instance, Alexa claims that Planes, Trains, and Automobiles is the best Thanksgiving movie ever made.
Recipes and Groceries
The kitchen is where most of the action happens on Thanksgiving and a smart speaker or smart display with a voice assistant can be a real help when cooking up a feast. Pulling up and scrolling through recipes by voice is useful for a cook running around a kitchen. Some of the recipe skills are integrated into videos showing exactly what to do as well. And, if you’ve forgotten an ingredient or two and can find one nearby that is open, voice assistants can order groceries for pickup and delivery. Though Thanksgiving is not an ideal time for it, Siri and Google Assistant can order groceries from Walmart, while Alexa is connected to Whole Foods and AmazonFresh.
Football is an integral part of many Thanksgivings and voice assistants can help fans stay connected to the games that day. They can remind you when the game is going to start and relay scores in real-time if you’re busy basting and can’t get to the living room. If you have a smart TV, the voice assistant can flip on the game before kickoff even if you can’t find the remote. Closer to home, Google and Amazon both offer a bunch of sports trivia and other games that the whole family can play through smart speakers and smart displays, although they aren’t quite up to throwing the ball just yet.
Thanksgiving is all about family and friends coming together for a celebration. Video chats don’t necessarily require a voice assistant or smart display, but they can make it faster to connect to more people, whether it’s a kitchen conference call about recipe problems or putting a smart display on the table so it feels like people far away are at dinner together. Smart speakers can also be useful to gather everyone at one house together. Amazon and Google both offer a broadcast feature. When dinner is ready, the host can ask Alexa or Google Assistant to broadcast the announcement that people should come to the living room and every other smart speaker in the house network will play it, meaning no need to shout before everyone sits down and the turkey is carved.