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How to turn off Alexa’s creepy whisper mode

Photo: Karsten Negalia, Shutterstock

Photo: Karsten Negalia, Shutterstock

I love my smart speaker – as much as you can ever steal a piece of privacy that’s just used to gather information about you – but that doesn’t mean I don’t find a lot of things creepy in a dystopian way. And one of the scariest things about Alexa is the fact that when you whisper a command to do it, it whispers back. Fortunately, you can easily turn this terrifying feature off.

Why do you have to whisper to Alexa?you might ask? My own reasons are entirely correct: My children have been asleep for half a decade and have heard the same piece of music, a two-hour electronic mix of standards for sleepy lullabies like “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” and “Baa”, Baa, Black Sheep “( wait… that’s the same song) that we ran into on YouTube by chance.

After playing this video hundreds of times, I finally found a way to stream it to Alexa (with a skill and routine; more on that here) so I can put the kids to bed without my phone or computer for giving up the video it takes them 20 minutes to fall asleep. And sometimes that means talking to Alexa after they fall asleep – at this point I don’t necessarily want to speak at the highest volume in their room. And the first time I whispered A.Lexa stop music too it and it whispered back OK I was deeply insecure.

What ever Your Reasons to whisper sweet things to Alexa, it’s easy to keep her from whispering back. There are two ways to do this. The first is to simply ask Alexa to turn off whisper mode. (Rest assured, it won’t whisper back confirmation that this has happened).

Screenshot: Joel Cunningham

If you don’t want to say the command out loud (see above), just open the Alexa app on your phone and select the “More” Option in the lower right corner, then choose “The settings.” Swipe down “Voice responses” and toggle “Whisper mode” in the off position. That’s it – your smart speaker is now a little less scary.

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