Amazon today has announced a new capability for Alexa. This particular capability is important for consumer devices, but even IT Pros that manage large fleets of computers should recognize the immediate value here.
We’re excited to introduce the Wake-on-LAN Controller, which enables customers to use Alexa to power on smart devices which have gone into a low power mode and cannot be woken up via the cloud. Now, whenever a customer wants to power on a smart device, typically a TV or other entertainment equipment, that has gone into low power mode using only voice, they can simply say, “Alexa, turn on my TV.” The associated smart home skill then uses the Wake-on-LAN Controller to send a directive to a customer’s Echo devices, resulting in a Wake-on-LAN (WoL) packet being broadcast over the customer’s local area network (LAN) or WiFi. Although device makers can already use the Alexa Smart Home API to control TVs and other equipment until today customers were often not able to power on devices in low power mode. We have now delivered an alternative that can help power on devices, without requiring device makers to make hardware changes.
Alexa has recently delivered a client for all PCs. With this new WoL capability, IT Pros should soon be able to wake computers using voice or Alexa routines, to make them available for updating or maintenance.