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Will Echo Dot Work Without Wi-Fi?

Last Updated Nov 8, 2022
two echo dots side by side on table

If you own an Echo Dot, you probably ask Alexa about the weather, music, or the news. It’s a great addition to any home and allows for more smart home automation. However, if your Wi-Fi suddenly stops working, you might be wondering if the Echo Dot will still work.

Without Wi-Fi, the Echo Dot is simply a Bluetooth speaker. You will be able to use Bluetooth to play music on your phone, but most features will stop working without Wi-Fi. Amazon Alexa also does not work without an internet connection.

Below, we’ll discuss how the Echo Dot works and which features you can and can’t use without Wi-Fi.

Can You Use Echo Dot Without Wi-Fi?

The Echo Dot is a device that has to be connected to Wi-Fi to work properly. Without Wi-Fi, you won’t be able to use Alexa features, and the Echo Dot just becomes a regular speaker without smart capabilities.

Most smart devices, including the Echo Dot, have to be connected to Wi-Fi for a few reasons:

  • Wi-Fi allows the device to connect to music streaming services
  • Wi-Fi gives the Echo Dot access to podcasts and other audio
  • Alexa’s voice assistant capabilities need Wi-Fi to access information from the internet and to turn on apps
  • The Echo Dot needs Wi-Fi to connect to the Amazon servers
  • Commands are not stored on the device but rather on the server

Simply put, the Echo Dot needs Wi-Fi to take the commands you give it and get information back from the external servers.

What Echo Dot Features Are Available without Wi-Fi?

Certain features will keep working without Wi-Fi, but not very many. For example, you can still use the speaker to play music with Bluetooth, but this will only work if you have already set up the Bluetooth connection before the Wi-Fi quit working.

To use the Echo Dot as a Bluetooth speaker, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Alexa app on your smartphone or tablet.
  2. Select Menu.
  3. Choose Settings.
  4. Select Bluetooth.
  5. Select a device from the list.
  6. Click Forget.
  7. Repeat this step for all the Bluetooth devices you have on the list.

All devices will need to be forgotten so that the Echo Dot can recognize the Bluetooth connection. If you need more help setting your speaker up with Bluetooth, check out this guide.

The alarms you have already set up on your Echo Dot will also continue working. However, you will not be able to set up any new alarms. The alarm system is one of the only features kept in the Alexa device itself; it does not need to connect to the Amazon servers. However, you cannot turn off the alarm with Alexa if the Wi-Fi is not working. It will continue to go off until a Wi-Fi connection is reestablished, or it is turned off in the Alexa app.

How Can I Use My Echo Dot Without Wi-Fi?

Without Wi-Fi, you will have to connect Alexa to a hotspot to continue using internet features. The hotspot will use your phone’s data to secure an internet connection between it and the Echo Dot.

To connect the Echo Dot to a hotspot, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Alexa app.
  2. Select Devices.
  3. Select Echo & Alexa.
  4. Choose your device from the list.
  5. Choose Change next to Wi-Fi network.
  6. Follow the instructions in-app and make sure your select your smart device’s network.

You should now be able to use your Echo Dot as normal.

Note: Keep in mind that hotspot streaming is often slower than Wi-Fi, especially if used for several hours. It may take Alexa longer to respond, and music may take longer to stream or upload.

Does the Echo Dot Use Wi-Fi All the Time?

The Echo Dot relies on an internet connection to perform most of its features and functions. Without Wi-Fi, Alexa and the Echo Dot can’t access or use Spotify, Google, or any other app.

However, know that the Echo Dot will only use Wi-Fi when it needs access to retrieve or send data. For example:

  • Alexa will use Wi-Fi when you give it a command.
  • Alexa will not use Wi-Fi when it’s idle.
  • Alexa needs Wi-Fi when you ask it to access an app or platform.
  • If you’re not currently using Alexa, it won’t be using the Wi-Fi.

Final Thoughts

Most features will not work without Wi-Fi on the Echo Dot. Wi-Fi is needed to connect to the Amazon servers to send and receive information. However, you can still use Bluetooth with the device to use it as a standard speaker. You can also connect a mobile hotspot if you have one set up to still get access to some of the Echo Dot’s smart features.