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Alexa can now switch on your car and remotely set the climate control

'Alexa, warm up the car'

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While Alexa might seem most at home actually in the home, switching on lights, playing music and reading the news whenever you ask her to, she is now able to take control of your car — to an extent.

The latest skill to arrive on the Amazon Alexa app is from Japanese car maker Nissan. Called NissanConnect Service, the skill gives Alexa the ability to unlock your car, sound the horn, turn the lights on and off, and even start the engine.

As well as all that, Alexa can also be asked to remotely set the climate control before you get in, which we think is pretty cool. Imagine asking Alexa to heat the interior up while you eat your breakfast on a cold winter's morning.

The NissanConnect Services app, which is basically what Alexa is controlling here, is available for a wide range of Nissan vehicles from model year 2016 through to model year 2018, and no doubt beyond as interest in Alexa shows no sign of slowing.

As with other third-party skills, asking Alexa to perform tasks via NissanConnect Services is a little clunky, as you've to ask her to ask the skill to do something. But given the upcoming Amazon Echo Plus connects directly to some smart home gadgets like Philips Hue light bulbs, we reckon Amazon will one day have Alexa talk directly to our cars, too.

Here is a selection of commands to try out with Alexa and your compatible Nissan:

Connect with a vehicle and launch a request

  • "Alexa, Connect to my Altima with NissanConnect Services"
  • "Alexa, Ask NissanConnect Services to connect to my Altima"

Select a specific vehicle

  • "Alexa, Tell NissanConnect Services to select my Rogue Sport"
  • "Alexa, Select my Rogue Sport using NissanConnect Services"

Remotely lock or unlock vehicle doors

  • "Alexa, I want you to unlock the doors of my Maxima with NissanConnect Services"
  • "Alexa, I want you to lock the doors in my Maxima with NissanConnect Services"

Remotely turn on and off the horn

  • "Alexa, Please honk the horn of my Rogue using NissanConnect Services"
  • "Alexa, I want you to honk the horn in my Rogue with NissanConnect Services"

Start and stop the engine

  • "Alexa, Tell NissanConnect Services to start my Altima"
  • "Alexa, Start my Altima with NissanConnect Services"

Turn the lights on and off

  • "Alexa, Turn on the lights of my Murano with NissanConnect Services"
  • "Alexa, I want you to turn on the lights in my Murano using NissanConnect Services"

And these are the Nissan cars Alexa can communicate with:

  • Nissan Altima (MY16, MY17, MY17.5)
  • Nissan Maxima (MY16, MY17)
  • Nissan Murano (MY17.5)
  • Nissan Pathfinder (MY17, MY18)
  • Nissan Rogue (MY16, MY17)
  • Nissan Rogue Sport (MY17)
  • Nissan Sentra (MY16, MY17)
  • Nissan TITAN (MY17)
  • Nissan TITAN XD (MY16, MY17)
  • Nissan GT-R (MY17)
  • Nissan Armada (MY18)
(also visit GearBrain's What Works with Amazon Alexa to see the connected devices that work with Amazon Echo and Alexa enabled devices.)
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