Tech Guide

How to make Amazon Alexa your main voice assistant on Android phones

Key Points
  • You can now set Amazon Alexa as the default voice assistant on your Android phone.
  • It replaces Google Assistant when you hold the home button.
  • You can use Alexa to order from Amazon, call friends, or perform most of the tasks of an Amazon Echo.
Jeff Bezos
Rex Curry | Reuters

You can now use Amazon's Alexa instead of Google Assistant by default on your Android phone.

The new option was noticed by a user on Reddit over the weekend.

That means you can hold the home button and pull up Alexa. This is particularly compelling if you own an Amazon Echo at home, where you might already be used to using Alexa to check the weather, play the news or add goods to your shopping list.

I'll show you how.

How to use Alexa instead of Google Assistant on your Android phone

Select Alexa from the menu in Android
Todd Haselton | CNBC
  • Download the Amazon Alexa app from the Google Play Store.
  • Open it and sign in to your Amazon account.
  • Open Settings on your Android phone
  • Open Apps
  • Tap "Default Apps"
  • Select "Assist & voice input"
  • Choose Alexa instead of Google Assistant.

If you're on a Samsung Android phone, the steps are different

  • Download Alexa
  • Open Settings
  • Tap Advanced features
  • Select Device assistance app
  • Choose Alexa

After you've followed the steps above, you'll see a prompt to talk to Alexa instead of Google Assistant. It'll ask for permissions, so tap "Allow" to let Alexa hear your requests, call and message family members, control devices in your smart home and provide location-relevant search results.

Alexa showing the weather on Android
Todd Haselton | CNBC

That's all there is to it. Now you'll be able to hold the home button to pull up Alexa. You can use Alexa to turn on smart lights at home ("Alexa, turn on the living room lights," for example), order products from Amazon by voice ("Alexa, order soap") and more.

You can buy stuff right from Amazon
Todd Haselton | CNBC