Alexa, Senior Caregiver?: Using Alexa Together to Connect with Aging Relatives

Header image with an Amazon Alexa device on a table. Graphic says, "Alexa, add carrots to Mom's grocery list" and "Using Alexa Together to connect with aging relatives"

There’s no instruction guide for navigating care for an aging loved one. While we all want to be there for our family members as they age, sometimes geography, jobs, and more get in the way of us being there for our loved ones, especially when they live alone. These obstacles oftentimes mean that families worry about their aging loved ones with no easy way to check how they are doing.

Amazon believes they may have the solution: Alexa Together.

What is Alexa Together?

Alexa Together is a subscription-based caregiving service available through Amazon. Specifically, it connects users’ Alexa app to their aging loved ones’ Echo devices, so that families can get peace of mind that their relatives are doing well or, if something happens, that help is always available.

If you’re thinking, Wait – can’t Alexa already do that? Well, yes… and no. There is some overlap between regular Alexa and Alexa Together. Both, for example, allow emergency calling, staying connected with loved ones, and other miscellaneous features like setting up timers and playing music. 

Alexa Together goes a step further, however; it provides:

  • hands-free access to a 24/7 emergency response system (think Life Alert meets Alexa), 
  • customized alerts (so you know if your loved one’s activities drastically change), 
  • remote assist features (so you can help your relative manage devices from afar), and
  • automatic fall-detection responses (so help is available right away).

The Features

Let’s take a closer look at just what Alexa Together can offer you and your family.

Emergency Response System

You physically can’t be there for your loved one 24/7… but you can rest easy knowing that they have 24/7 Urgent Response support with Alexa Together. Its emergency response system is designed to work together with compatible fall-detection systems. If a fall occurs or your loved one asks Alexa to call for help, Alexa can connect your loved one to Urgent Response and notify you (and other emergency contacts) of the call.

Customized Alerts

Keep tabs on your loved one without being intrusive. Receive customized alerts, such as when your loved one first uses Alexa for the day or if they haven’t used the service by a certain time.

Remote Assistance

If your loved one is a little forgetful or isn’t the best with technology, you can help from afar. Using Alexa Together, you can set up reminders for your relative, help schedule appointments, create grocery lists, and much more.

Amazon will also incorporate Alexa Routines into its Alexa Together service in the near future. With Routines, you can make life easier for your loved one. For example, you can establish a morning routine for your loved one where Alexa will automatically turn on a connected alarm clock and smart coffee machine at a certain time or at a voice-activated command.

Alexa Together At a Glance

  • Cost: 6-month free trial, then either $19.99/mo + tax or $199/year + tax
  • Availability: US-only at the current time
  • Circle of Support: Add up to 10 caregivers to receive notifications and other privileges for any account
  • Necessary Setup: Requires Echo and/or Alexa-enabled devices, an Alexa Together subscription, two unique Amazon accounts with mobile phone numbers
  • Urgent Response System: Works together with compatible third-party devices that detect falls
  • Video Chats: Pairing with Echo Shows allows video chats