Pocket-lint is supported by its readers. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

(Pocket-lint) - Amazon is rolling out a new Alexa feature, called Hunches, that allows the assistant to proactively complete house tasks for you without having to ask permission. Alexa will perform hunches - like automatically turn off your lights - all based on your past habits and requests.

What are Alexa Hunches?

Alexa has long been able to look at your activity to suggest more to do, whether it's a follow-up question or to play a video or song. Now, with proactive Hunches enabled, Alexa can offer suggestions for your smart home devices.

The idea is, if you've left a smart device on, Alexa can offer to turn it off for you. For example, if one of your smart lights is on when you say "night," Alexa alerts you and offers to turn it off. Alexa can have hunches about a variety of supported smart home device, from lights and thermostats to doors and switches. You can also enable Alexa to automatically act on hunches for you.

Hunches make Alexa more useful and are meant to cut down on how often you need to speak to the assistant to get things done at home.

How to turn on Alexa Hunches

Hunches are enabled by default. This means Alexa will still ask you to act on a hunch. If you want Alexa to act on hunches without having to ask first, you will need to enable "automatic actions" in the Alexa mobile app. For example, you can have Alexa turn off the lights when you're asleep or adjust the thermostat when you're away. Just follow these steps to fully enable the feature:

Set Alexa to take action on Hunches

  1. Open the Alexa app.
  2. Open More  > select Settings.
  3. Scroll down and select Hunches.
  4. Select Set up automatic actions.
  5. Select the hunches you want Alexa to act on.

To turn off Hunches entirely, just dive into the Alexa app (More > Settings > Hunches).

When will Hunches be available?

Amazon said the feature should start rolling out in the US from 25 January 2021.

Is Apple Music worth it? Apple's streaming service explored

Writing by Maggie Tillman. Originally published on 26 January 2021.