Top positive review
A heaven-sent lifeline to independence for a newly blind person
September 7, 2018
The Echo is not perfect and I am sure the software and integration with skills will improve over time. I read some of these reviews and think of how entitled, complacent, sedentary, and essentially lazy so many of us are. People are looking for the world of Wall-E and Alexa / Echo is not there yet. It is still an awesome and reliable tool.
My mother is now 75 and has recently become fully blind due to glaucoma and related eye conditions. My father is there to help, but he also has to occasionally leave her for periods of time. She has drawn great comfort from using Alexa to help her with medication reminders and timers related to medical treatments. She even just uses it to tell what time it is. Soon we'll attach a smart-phone account and calendar / contacts etc. to allow her to place phone calls etc. She is a technology averse person by her history and has been thrust into dependence upon technology as well as other people. Just being able to tell the time and to remind her of her medications has had a vast and immense impact on the happiness of my parents. My father, not a nurturer, was being asked to tell her the time every 10 minutes. She was missing doses or taking incorrect doses at the wrong times on occasions when she was alone. Knowing the weather or asking Alexa a simple question has given her a huge amount of simple freedom that helps her feel more independent and has also relaxed the pressure on her husband to be constantly attending to her as she finds her balance and measures her requests for help because she is constantly asking for help in her immediate needs. Something so simple and such a simple application of a simple tool has immediately improved two people's lives. My mother is even becoming adventurous with the Echo and is trying new things. My father is researching skills to use. This is a big deal in a simple way that should never be downplayed or underappreciated and taken for granted.
Have reasonable expectations and you will be very pleased. If you are expecting to be immobile while this tool butters your toast, you should take a breath, have a moment, and appreciate the things that you can do for yourself. For the price of a tank and a half of gas, you have a tool that will solve a lot of your problems and add simple convenience to your life. If you're looking to be George Jetson or live in the VR world of Ready Player One or a Black Mirror episode, get a grip, take a trip and see a sunset and appreciate what you have and can do for yourself. Flying cars that drive themselves will be here soon enough....