Being able to ask Google Assistant follow-up questions without needing to say the action word again has removed a lot of frustration we used to experience when interacting with the search giants virtual assistant. Amazon has finally gotten around to adding similar functionality to Alexa in the form of ‘Follow-up Mode’.
Alexa will now listen for follow-up questions after the initial request, with her blue ring (if you are using an Echo device) remaining lit up to show that she is still at your beck-and-call. Once the blue ring dims, you’ll have to wake her up again. There are some scenarios where Alexa won’t wait for a follow-up question, such as if you’ve already ended the conversation, if there is background noise, or if she is playing audio such as music or an audiobook.
This is where we get to one of Alexa’s frustrating user experiences in that you have to enable the Follow-up Mode manually.
- To turn on Follow-Up Mode, open the Alexa app on your smartphone:
- Go to the Menu and select Settings.
- Select your device.
- Scroll down to Follow-Up Mode and use the toggle to turn it on.
For the moment, Follow-up Mode is only available on Alexa devices that have US English set as their default language. Google Assistant recently gained the ability to add routines to its functions, I wonder if we will soon see Amazon added the functionality to Alexa?