Children can get a special message from Father Christmas on Amazon Alexa

This will get your children in the Christmas spirit. [Photo: Getty]
This will get your children in the Christmas spirit. [Photo: Getty]

Amazon’s virtual assistant, Alexa, has been sending out daily Christmas messages to get our children in the festive mood. As if they needed anymore convincing.

Users simply have to ask Alexa “how many days until Christmas?” and Alexa will reply asking if you’d like to hear an update from Santa.

The messages, which change every day to add to the Christmas excitement, aren’t just your bog standard updates, either.

Each day St Nick promises to keep us updated with the latest happenings in the North Pole, a gesture that will de-ice even the most hardened of scrooges.

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One of the more recent updates said: “Ho ho ho, I'm so looking forward to Christmas. I will be starting my daily Christmas update very soon so make sure you come back. If you love Christmas, come back tomorrow for another Christmas update.”

Yesterday we learnt that he spent the day baking mince pies with Mrs Claus in the North Pole.

In fact, we’re not sure who’s enjoying it more - the adults or the children.

This isn’t the only Christmas measure Amazon is taking this Christmas.

Earlier in the year, users could ask Alexa when their Amazon orders would be delivered and Alexa would answer giving specific details about the items you purchased.

From 17 November, that feature was turned off in a bid to keep an air of mystery around gift giving. Now, although Alexa will still give you details it won’t name any brand names or items you’ve bought so children can’t guess their presents.

It’s the new-age version of poking a hole in every present while your parents are downstairs.

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There are other Alexa hacks to try out, too, as one mum-of-two discovered.

If you change Alexa’s name to Father Christmas, it will read out announcements from the app as if Father Christmas is the one saying them.

Emma Canning wrote: “So parents. Scare your kids into behaving by turning the name on Alexa to Father Christmas.”

That way you can send them personalised messages throughout December whenever you want.

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A recent study found that adults who aren’t polite to their digital assistants are more likely to be rude in real life. This then opened a wider debate about the way in which children speak to their digital assistants.

Perhaps adding the Father Christmas element into the mix might encourage children to say please and thank you to their virtual assistants.

With critics arguing voice-activated devices are making children less polite, journalist, Mariella Frostup, doesn’t think there’s any harm in practising good manners around your devices in “the same way you would a teacher or a parent”.

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