Amazon’s Alexa has been able to directly control smart thermostats for over a year now, but one glaring omission has been its inability to tell you anything about the thermostats current state. While you could always ask Alexa to set a temperature, you couldn’t request what the thermostat was set to or request to hear the actual current indoor temperature, leaving many to resort to using third-party Alexa Skills for those tasks. Amazon has now finally updated their Alexa Smart Home Skill API to support thermostat requests.
This means Alexa will natively be able to read back a smart home thermostat’s current setting and temperature when you ask “Alexa, what’s my thermostat set to?” or “Alexa, what’s the thermostat temperature?” The units used, Celsius or Fahrenheit, for the temperature read back to you will be determined by a setting you configure in the Alexa app.
Smart thermostat manufacturers will need to implement the new ability to query temperatures themselves, so this isn’t something that will just start working immediately for everyone. I have a 3rd Generation Nest thermostat and when I ask for the temperature, Alexa tells me that command does not work on my device, so Nest has not yet updated their Alexa integration to support the new feature. Hopefully it doesn’t take long for thermostat manufacturers to support this very handy new capability.