When Amazon introduced Alexa’s Drop In feature, it gave Echo devices a new purpose as an intercom system. While it’s useful being able to ask Alexa to drop in on a specific device or room, you may not want to repeat the process for every room in your home. That’s why Amazon made it possible to drop in on multiple Echo devices at once in addition to one at a time, calling the feature Group Chat.
What Makes this Different
Before, you could only use the Drop In feature on the device you named. For example, if you have three kids, each with their own Echo device, you needed to drop in on each device individually.
Now, if you want to reach all three kids, you can drop in on all the devices in your home with a single command. If you already have Drop In enabled, it’s even easier to set up. It’s also easy to set up if you don’t have Drop In enabled.
Enabling Drop In
You’ll need the Alexa app and to connect to the devices in your home. If your app is already connected to your Echo devices, enabling Drop In is as easy as opening the Alexa app and tapping Communicate at the bottom of the screen. If you’ve never been asked about Drop In before, you’ll receive a pop-up asking if you’d like to “Try Home Drop In.”
Tap Enable to enable Drop In.
Allowing Communications on Devices
You’ll also need to allow each device to accept communications. Tap Devices in the bottom right corner of your screen to see your devices.
Existing devices are listed under Echo & Alexa and All Devices (if you want to see all your connected devices, including those that can’t act as an intercom). Tap the device you want to enable communications and Drop In on. Select Communication.
Toggle Communication to “On” and tap Drop In to turn it to On if it’s not already enabled.
Repeat this process for every device.
Drop In on Multiple Echo Devices
Once Drop In is enabled, you can say “Alexa, drop in on [Name of device].” Alexa then allows you to speak through the device.
You just have one final setting to enable before you can ask Alexa to drop in on all your devices. You can say “Alexa, drop in on all devices” to be prompted to change the setting, or you can do it manually beforehand.
In order to use a group chat Drop In, you have to allow Amazon to temporarily decrypt group chats in order to combine the multiple audio streams. If this isn’t something you want to do, you won’t be able to use Drop In on multiple Echo devices at once. It’s a privacy compromise, but if you don’t mind Alexa hearing you say “dinner’s ready” or something else non-personal, then you’re fine.
Open Settings and tap Communication in the Alexa app.
Tap “Enhanced Features.”
Toggle the setting to Enabled. It’s disabled by default.
Now you’re ready to say “Alexa, drop in on all devices.”
In addition to having a whole home intercom without having to say individual device names, you can also drop in from your Alexa app even if you’re not home. For instance, you may just want to check in on your kids at home while you’re still at work or ask the pet sitter how things are going. Since you don’t always know what room someone will be in, you can drop in on all your devices to ensure you get an answer.
You can also set up reminders to use all your devices. When you set up a reminder, choose “All Devices” in “Announces From.” Now, you’ll get your reminders wherever you are in your home. You can do this with individual reminders or all of them.
If the above is not enough for you, find out more ways to make Alexa even smarter.