Control Alexa Echo from anywhere in the World

If you are not within ear-shot of your Alexa Echo, Dot or Tap device and need to command it from anywhere in the world, you’d most likely use the handy mobile app or web interface to control it. For some strange reason, if you’d rather use voice commands from anywhere in the world, you can still do it using apps such as Alexa Listens or Reverb, among many others. We’d be the first ones to call these out and say “It’s not a hack”. But [pat dhens] approach is above reproach! He has posted details on how to Remote Control the Alexa Echo from Anywhere in the World. Short version of the hack — he’s using a Raspberry Pi with a speaker attached to it which commands his Alexa Tap using a text-to-speech converter program.

The long version is short as well. The user uses a VPN, such as OpenVPN, to log in to their home network where the Alexa device is located. Then, use VNC to connect to the Raspberry Pi to access its shell. Finally, the user issues a text command which is converted to speech by the ‘festival‘ program on the Raspberry Pi. The output goes to an external speaker via the Raspberry Pi’s 3.5 mm audio out jack. And that’s all there is to it. You’ve just issued a voice command to your Alexa from across the world.

Maybe it will save your vocal chords from damage due to excessive hollering, we guess. He’s even made a short video to prove that it works. Now all it needs is a microphone to listen to Alexa, convert speech-to-text, and then transmit it back to you across the world to complete the cycle.

We’re not sure, but he thinks this hack will lead him to world domination. Good Luck with that.

15 thoughts on “Control Alexa Echo from anywhere in the World

    1. From anywhere in the world, you say? So the future of malicious cracking may be to scan for vulnerable Alexa interfaces online and order two tons of creamed corn on Amazon for the owner. (XKCD reference)

  1. You know what’s good at transmitting voice commands? A phone. Plant a cellphone next to Alexa and install an app that answers and turns on speakerphone when you call. Just because you can use a Pi, doesn’t mean you should.

    1. Totally agree. But instead of a cell phone I have a Cisco VoIP phone and the requisite physical servers, software (virtualized on the prior), SBC, and ITSP to support it. Auto answer speaker and Alexa is at my finger tips. Now that I think about it I can even do video to watch the light ring spin :).

      I’m starting to think the rPi might consume less power though but what’s the fun in that.

      Downside is I’ve noticed people give me funny looks when I yell into my cellphone to ask Alexa something.

    2. “Because you can” is why this was done. I mean does anyone actually use these Alexa crap things for remote control anyway, I find that ringing the wife up does a very similar job and talking to the wife is much preferred to talking to a plastic box.

      1. Agreed on the “because you can” mentality, things and possibilities don’t get explored otherwise, then we get stuck into comfort zones.

        Also “because you can(TM?)”, why not build a server farm out of 200 or more core i7 gaming-grade systems (for overclocking function) and have that talk to Alexa.
        The server farm will have ironically more processing power than that glorified potential-spyware-bomb-as-a-speaker-box* called Alexa.
        *Depends on who cracks it and for what: botnet, virus spreading, data leaking. Also should it be 3&4 letter agencies or some basement hacker with a balaclava and nefarious intents, as long as people are aware of these risks then they can make appropriate compromises and still have fun.

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