Amazon is nixing this useful Alexa feature Monday


FILE – In this Sept. 27, 2017, file photo, Amazon Echo and Echo Plus devices, behind, sit near illuminated Echo Button devices during an event announcing several new Amazon products by the company in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)

(NEXSTAR) — Amazon’s Alexa has a bunch of features that make it relatively indispensable to a lot of people, but does the virtual assistant read your email for you?

If it did, it doesn’t anymore.

Alexa can access your email and read it aloud to you once you link your account to it. At least, that was the case before Monday. Amazon is retiring the feature and unlinking all email accounts from Alexa.

According to “TechHive,” users received emails letting them know about the change.

“We’re writing to inform you that beginning on November 8th, 2021, email access will no longer be supported for Alexa customers,” Amazon told customers in an email blast. “This means you will no longer be able to link your Gmail or Microsoft email account with Alexa to browse or manage your email, and any linked email account(s) will automatically be unlinked.”

Also, “related email features” such as email routines and notifications will be affected, according to the email blast. Amazon said it also will no longer track third-party packages via email. However, users can still track their Amazon orders by asking the device, “Alexa, where’s my stuff?”

Amazon added the email-reading feature in 2018. Users could use voice commands to read, delete, archive, and reply to messages in their linked email accounts.

Amazon told “Techhive” that the decision to remove the email feature came from its regular evaluation of it features and “experiences available to customers.” It also said customer feedback plays a role in its feature decisions.

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