By: Nick Gambino

Alexa is popular because of her integration with so many different products and programs, granting you control through the mere use of your voice. She’s always attentive and doesn’t require the tapping of a screen to get her to execute commands.

The popular digital assistant has just received yet another update that will make watching content on apps like Hulu and NBC a whole lot easier…and lazier.

With recently released functionality for controlling videos in third-party apps on Fire TV, Alexa is now integrated with Hulu, NBC, CBS All Access, SHOWTIME, Bravo and PlayStation Vue to allow you to control said apps with your voice.

You can say things like “Alexa, play It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” or “Alexa, watch 60 Minutes” or “Alexa, search for comedies on SHOWTIME.”

But it’s not limited to just starting shows or movies. You can control playback functions as well. “Alexa, pause” or “Alexa, rewind 5 minutes” or “Alexa, play from the beginning” are just a few of the commands that will put your streaming needs into effect.

If you have a subscription to Live TV through Hulu you can even tune to a particular channel. Try “Alexa, watch FOX” and you’ll be taken to the channel.

While these functions were available on Prime Video, allowing this feature in third-party apps puts Amazon in a better position to make Alexa more universal. If they’re dreaming of a world where you don’t have to tap a screen or click a button to execute a process then voice commands will need to work with virtually everything.

I for one am all for voice commands to control my media but always want the option to tap and click if I’m not in the mood for talking. You know, sometimes the last thing you want after a hard day at work is to have to open your mouth and utter words. Even if you’re just asking your robot assistant to play your favorite guilty pleasure.


Nick Gambino is a regular script writer and tech beat reporter for NewsWatch. He lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and daughter.