For those of us who have been using Amazon Alexa within Australia for a while, I imagine most of us have been using a US-based account so that we can use the Amazon Echo devices. While this works for the most part, a major draw back was a requirement to use a US-based street address which restricted some of the natural flow of spoken commands.
Instead of saying a simple “Alexa, what is the weather tomorrow”, we instead had to use long-form speech to specify a major city such as “Alexa, what is the weather tomorrow for Perth, Australia”. You could also forget trying to specify smaller cities such as Bunbury or Rockingham. Some skills such as news or sports updates were also limited to US-based organisations such as CNN or Sky Sports.
If this applied to you, good news! Amazon has now announced the official launch date for the sale of Echo devices within Australia, which includes native Alexa support, from 1st February 2018. The Australian skills store already has a landing page – Alexa Skills with a number of skills from Australian-based organisations such as SBS News and CoastalWatch.
Plot twist – I have logged in to my Amazon Alexa Account tonight and I can already change the address settings!
You can access these settings by logging into your Alexa account and going to Settings-> Echo device-> General-> Device Location. Within here you can select Australia and enter your address. Hit save and you are now good to go.