ACK Device Interactions

Before you create a product with Alexa Connect Kit (ACK), understand the different ACK interactions that can occur on your device. These interactions define how your device behaves through normal use.

There are two categories of ACK device interactions:

  • User-initiated triggers – An action that occurs on an ACK-based device, after a user completes a pre-programmed pattern, such as pressing a unique button combination. For example, enter setup mode, or begin a factory reset. You typically use these triggers to transition devices into a specific device state.
  • Device states – The different states that an ACK-based device cycle through during normal use. For example, ready for setup or device connected.

    ACK-based devices transition between device states in response to user-initiated triggers or other relevant external changes, such as losing Wi-Fi connectivity. You can indicate device state changes by using hardware or software changes, such as blinking on-device LEDs or using buzzers to produce sound.

Why are ACK device interactions important?

You should design your product to handle ACK device interactions appropriately. For each interaction, you should map out how it impacts both your device and your users. To define your interactions, you need to identify how your product behaves in certain scenarios. For example, you can define these interactions by asking yourself the following questions:

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How does a user set up my device?

To start the setup process on your device, you might require users to press and hold your device's power button for 10 seconds. If users must press the power button, how do they know when the device is in setup mode? To indicate this mode, you could use a series of blinking LED lights or display a message on a screen (if you have a screen).

How does a user register my device?

To register your device, you might require users to scan a barcode by using the Alexa app. If users must scan a barcode, where is the barcode located? Is the barcode located on the bottom of the device or in the box? Is the barcode printed in your quick-start guide?

What happens if my device loses its Wi-Fi connection?

To reconnect your device to Wi-Fi, you might have users rely on the Alexa app. If users must use the Alexa app, how do they know when the device loses its Wi-Fi connection? Do you have a screen that shows a notification? Do you use a series of LED lights to indicate this condition? For example, when your ACK-based device loses connectivity due to a change in your home Wi-Fi network name or password, Alexa can reconnect your device back without user interaction using Wi-Fi Simple Reconnect (WSR).

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Last updated: Nov 27, 2023