Amazon Alexa Smart Home

How do I change the wake word for my Amazon Echo?

Amazon Echo
Hey Alexa... I mean, Echo... or whatever your name is...

You’ve got to feel for anyone called Alexa – Amazon comes along with its all-conquering Amazon Echo speakers, and now every time anyone mutters their name a computerised assistant springs into life.

There are several reasons why you might want to change the wake word for your Echo speaker, aside from having a real-life Alexa in the house. If you’ve got your Echo within earshot of the TV, it will leap into action every time Amazon runs one of its adverts. If you’ve got two Echo devices in adjoining rooms, they might both hear and respond to the same command. ¬†Or you might just want to be different.

Sadly, Alexa herself is no help in this regard. Ask Alexa “how do I change your wake word?” and she responds, “sorry, I don’t know what went wrong”. She’s clearly not keen on being ditched.

Alternative Amazon Echo wake words

It’s a doddle to change the wake word your Echo speaker responds to, although you’ve only got four options to choose from. You can’t (as yet) determine a bespoke word, so if you were hoping to rouse your speaker by yelling “Oi oi saveloy!” at your Echo, you’re going to be one disappointed Cockney.

The four words you can choose from are:





Wake word settings

Amazon Alexa settings
Wake up: pick from the four options

To change the wake word, open the Alexa app, choose Settings from the left-hand menu, and then pick the device for which you want to change the wake word. Scroll down until you find the wake word option and pick one of the four words from the drop-down menu.

Job done.



About the author

Barry Collins

Barry has scribbled about tech for almost 20 years for The Sunday Times, PC Pro, WebUser, Which? and many others. He was once Deputy Editor of Mail Online and remains in therapy to this day. Email Barry at

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