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Amazon’s line of Echo smart speakers and displays includes a handy feature called Drop In that allows two-way intercom-style communication between compatible devices. Rather than needing to call someone, Drop In lets you pop into a conversation in real-time just by speaking a command to your Alexa device.

While useful for dropping quick messages to others in your home, Drop In also lets you connect remotely with friends and family members anywhere in the world who also own Echo or Alexa-powered devices. It takes just a few simple steps to set up this two-way video and audio calling between designated contacts.

The first requirement is having the Alexa mobile app installed on your phone and linked to your Amazon account. From within the app, you can enable and manage Drop In permissions for each of your contacts. Both parties also need compatible Echo devices activated with Drop In and with the feature enabled on their Alexa profiles.

With the proper setup complete, initiating a Drop In call is as easy as voice commands to your smart speaker or display. Simply say “Alexa, drop in on [contact name]” and their device will ring to accept the call. Conversely, an enabled contact can drop in on you spontaneously as well by initiating from their end.

Video is supported between Echo Show devices for a more intercom-like experience, while standard Echo speakers facilitate audio-only calls. Either way, Drop In provides a seamless way to check in on loved ones or make announcements without even needing to dial.

A blue pulsing ring and tone will sound on the receiving device to alert someone of an incoming Drop In. The call is also answered automatically so there’s no button pressing involved. Callers and callees both have the option to disable their cameras with a simple voice command as well.

To set up Drop In for the first time, users need to download the Alexa app and sign up for an Amazon account if they don’t already have one linked. From within the app’s Communicate menu, enable the Drop In feature on your Alexa profile by toggling the appropriate setting.

Contacts can then be added and granted Drop In permissions through their individual profiles. But both parties should confirm these permissions are mutual to receive calls, not just place them. This creates a two-way intercom between accounts.

Now all that’s left is giving Drop In a test run between devices. Go ahead and try popping into an enabled contact’s Echo device through the Alexa app or your own speaker by name. Getting started is quick and easy, allowing effortless real-time check-ins anywhere.

For families with kids away at college or distant elderly relatives, Drop In brings the benefits of an intercom directly to your smart home tech. And it’s one more powerful use of Alexa’s increasingly robust communications capabilities through Amazon’s line of Echo speakers and displays. is a technology consultancy firm for design and custom code projects, with fixed monthly plans and 24/7 worldwide support.

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