You can now stop Alexa from saying the product name during shipping notifications

If you’ve turned on shipping notifications for Alexa, which allows your Echo devices to tell you when your Amazon orders are out for delivery, there’s a new option that you’ll probably want to configure one way or the other. You can now select whether you want Alexa to read off the name of the product being delivered.

If you load up the Alexa app and head to the Settings section, near the bottom you’ll find an area for Notifications. At the top of that section is an area to configure your Shopping Notifications, which is where the two new options exist. You can still turn off shopping notifications altogether, which is still the default state, but if you have them turned on, you can select if you want Alexa to speak out the contents of the shipment or not.

With the option to give the product name disabled, which is the default setting, Alexa will only tell you when the order that is arriving was placed and not what it contains. With the holidays just around the corner, this setting is crucial to avoid inadvertently revealing gifts to family and friends.

Shipping notifications are unprompted alerts that beep and light up your Echo devices with a yellow light when your Amazon packages are out for delivery. Alexa can also give you prompted shipping updates by asking “Alexa, where’s my stuff?” Unfortunately, the new option that prevents Alexa from saying the product names for unprompted notifications does not affect prompted notifications. That means that if you or anyone in your household asks for order updates, Alexa will still reveal the contents of the order.

There’s also a second new option under Alexa’s shopping notification settings that allows you to opt-into receiving notifications for reordering items. The setting says it will allow Alexa to remind you “to reorder items previously purchased on Amazon.”

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5 comments
  1. Jim Carter says:

    While I appreciate choices, I don’t like arbitrary changes to the behavior of my technology without my permission. I noticed a few days ago that suddenly the content of the notifications became rather useless without item names. Once my Christmas shopping is complete, I’ll venture into the app and put things back the way they were to begin with. As always; I appreciate these informative and useful articles. Despite being on every conceivable Amazon mailing list, no information regarding changes is ever forthcoming.

    • Erin says:

      I’ve been an Amazon Prime customer for many years and I have to agree with you that the weak link in the Amazon universe is absolutely shoddy, poor, and sometimes non-existent communication with customers about changes and enhancements to services they have already purchased. Unless you regularly scour sites like this one, you will be unaware of useful features and blindsided by changes to features you enjoyed.

  2. Tampa8 says:

    I get the “what’s new with Alexa” updates that would be a good place for them to explain new settings. I wish Amazon could get settings right because their products are great. But setting after setting seems like they do no research into what people would want. That includes lack of picking different sounds, the way they block callers but those callers still get your phone number, lack of repetitive reminders, etc… If you are going to have a setting that does not give what the item is (good idea) why only when unprompted?

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