Alexa, help me save water

photo by Jan Antonin Kolar

Amazon just announced a sound detection feature for Alexa which can identify the noise made by running water and remind you to turn off the tap.

According to not-for-profit Waterwise, 'a running tap wastes over six litres per minute' and can affect not only your bills, and cause water damage to your home, but also wastes valuable water at a time when supplies are under increasing strain from climate change and population growth.

The new water Sound Detector joins a series of existing sound-enabled triggers for the Alexa virtual assistant's routines, which include alerts for snoring, baby cries, barking dogs and coughing.

The Sound Detector's features are used to trigger Alexa routines. For example, you could make your smart lights flash a different colour when Alexa hears your tap running for too long.

Whether this technology could help save you from suffering a major flood or just relieve the minor irritation of forgetting to turn off a tap, hopefully it will help get people thinking more about water use in their home.