Tip of the Week

Is it Smart to Have a Smart Speaker?

Here's a fun fact: About 25% of adults in the U.S. have a smart speaker in the home, and that number keeps climbing. So while a quarter of us are cozying up to Alexa, some of us may not be so sure. What do we need to know whether we have one, want one, or are on the fence?

As with any cutting-edge technology, there are some unknowns and trade-offs, so be sure to make an informed choice and minimize the privacy risks . Even if you already have a smart speaker, it's never too late to get in the habit of turning it off when you're not using it or to make sure you're not using the default password. If you have a little kid, setting up a separate kid-friendly profile for them will help limit the amount of information collected about them. It's also important to set limits around how—and when—it's OK to use it. For older kids, it might be tempting to ask a smart device for solutions to homework questions ; while smart speakers can be a great tool for learning facts, they shouldn't become a replacement for trying to remember them yourself. Then, if you've done research, taken the plunge, investigated privacy, and set expectations, find the best uses and content it has to offer to help your family stay organized, enjoy podcasts together, have spontaneous dance parties, or find other ways to learn and have fun together!