Outside the U.S., there is no Cortana smart speaker, but in many places there is Amazon's Alexa, instead. And thanks to its developer community, you can use your Amazon Echo to add tasks and shopping lists to your Microsoft To-Do account.
Products used in this guide
- Amazon: Amazon Echo (opens in new tab) ($100)
- Amazon: Wonder Do It Alexa skill (opens in new tab) (Free)
- Microsoft: Microsoft To-Do (opens in new tab) (Free)
(For the purposes of this guide we're referencing the standard Amazon Echo, but the process is identical for all Echo products, and it also works just fine with the devices with screens, such as the Echo Show and the Echo Spot.)
How to sync your Amazon Echo to Microsoft To-Do
The process is very simple, requiring you to only add the third-party Alexa skill that makes it all happen and link your Microsoft account. At this time it only works with a personal Microsoft Account, and school or business Office 365 accounts cannot be used. Just follow these steps:
- Open the Amazon Alexa app on your smartphone or in your browser (opens in new tab).
- Open the skills and games section.
- Search for the Wonder Do It skill in the search box.
- Tap enable to add the skill to your Amazon Echo.
- Log in to your Microsoft account from the web browser window that pops up to link your account to the skill.
No Microsoft Account login information is added to the skill directly, and it uses a standard OAuth process for authenticating your account.
How to add tasks and shopping lists to Microsoft To-Do
The skill will automatically just add things you tell Alexa to your Microsoft To-Do lists without you needing to set anything up. Every time you add a task it will go into the "Tasks" list. Any items you tell Alexa to add to your shopping list will go into a new list in Microsoft To-Do called "Alexa Shopping List."
To add items from your Amazon Echo, simply speak to Alexa as follows:
- "Alexa add (insert task here) to my to-do list."
- "Alexa, add (insert item here) to my shopping list."
Both are standard Alexa voice commands and will add to your respective Alexa lists. The Wonder Do It skill will then sync both to your Microsoft To-Do account so you can access them on all your devices, wherever you are.
What you can't do is use Alexa to see what's on your Microsoft To-Do lists, and you're only able to add things using your Echo. It's also important to note that items added will be removed from the Alexa Shopping and To-do lists once synced to Microsoft To-Do.
Our top equipment picks
All you need is one of Amazon's Echo products to enjoy voice command bliss. We think the second-generation Amazon Echo is the one to go for.
A great smart speaker to have in your life
An excellent companion for any room, and now with added integration with your Microsoft To-Do lists.
The regular second-generation Echo is the best all-around choice in Amazon's range, mixing a great balance of stylish design, good sound quality and an affordable price.
The Echo isn't the only product that's great to put around your home; there are some fantastic alternatives that cost less or even have a display.
Amazon Echo Dot (opens in new tab) ($50 at Amazon)
The third-generation Echo Dot is a huge improvement on its predecessor in both sound and looks, while remaining compact and extremely affordable.
Amazon Echo Spot (opens in new tab) ($130 at Amazon)
Alexa takes on a new dimension when you add a screen, and the Echo Spot is a perfect companion for the office or any room in the home.
Richard Devine is an Editor at Windows Central. A former Project Manager and long-term tech addict, he joined Mobile Nations in 2011 and has been found on Android Central and iMore as well as Windows Central. Currently you'll find him covering all manner of PC hardware and gaming, and you can follow him on Twitter and Instagram.
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