Routines workaround? Is there a macro record control for Alexa?

  • 5 February 2018
  • 1 reply


I noiticed the Routines cannot control the Sonos, and therefore, I can't get it to both turn off the lights and play music. I want Alexa to turn on a playlist, turn on shuffle mode, turn the volume to 1, turn on my living room lights to 20%, turn off all other lights.

I can issue 5 separate commands to get what I want and they work fine with Sonos. If Routines were working perfectly, I could easily program one command to do all of that (except maybe turning on Shuffle Mode). However, it cannot, so is there a workaround like macro command recording?

I noticed that in my Alexa history, I can see all the commands I've issued. Is there a way to record and use those commands in plain English (my language) in some type of macro? This would be similar to recording mouse movements/clicks on a desktop to get a simple movement macro.

It seems like this "skill" could be so useful and simple to use, especially in a text format. For instance, you set up the macro name, and then in a text window, just type the "plain English" commands separated by a semicolon. Then, you say the macro name and it executes all your commands in that order. This would make it easy to program, more versatile and less limiting - if you can issue the command, you can integrate it.

It would make programming things a lot easier and more expected. I could say, "Alexa, Macro DrawTime" and the following commands would be understood:

"Alexa, set volume to 2 in Office";
"Alexa, play Drawing Music playlist on Office";
"Alexa, shuffle mode on";
Delay 20 mins;
"Alexa, turn off desk lamp";
"Alexa, turn on desk lamp";
Delay 30 seconds;
"Alexa, play 20 questions";

This could be a scenario where I want to do quick drawings for 20 mins, have the lights flicker to signal me to stop, and then a game of 20q would start playing to force me to take a break.

I am new to Alexa - I just set it up yesterday and was pleasantly surprised how easy it was to control my lights via my Telldus remote system. The most difficult part was trying to get Sonos to play what I want and how I want it, actually.


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1 reply


You might be able to do some of these things using the Yonomi skill and App, but check first that the app supports your lights... I know it supports Philips Hue and Sonos. Note you have to leave Yonomi App running in the background on your device for its routines to work with Alexa, at least that appears to be the case in iOS.