Frequently Asked Questions

What do I need to do to get started with the Virtual Concierge?
Getting started is easy:
  1. Get an Amazon Echo device from a retailer or Amazon.com.
  2. Sign up to create an account.
  3. Follow the set-up wizard to create a new Property in our portal.
  4. Add some things you want Alexa to say in response to guest questions.
  5. Follow the instructions to add your Echo device to your Property.
Pricing: What are subscription credits, and how do they work?
In the AIPEX portal, you can enable or disable the Virtual Concierge service at your properties. When enabled, 1 credit is consumed per day for each Echo device at a property. When the service is disabled, no credits are consumed. The base price for a credit is .40 USD, with quantity discounts of up to 40%.
Using credits allows us to offer hosts the ability to only pay for the service when you are using it. Most subscription models charge you by the month, whether there are guests in your property or not. Instead, with AIPEX self-service, you can disable your properties in the off-season and be charged nothing.
The cost of our service is nominal. For example, if you use one Echo device at your property:
  • A purchase of 300 credits is eligible for 20% off, or 32 cents per credit. 1 credit is consumed per day, so that is 32 cents per day. That means you can provide this service to your guests for a 3-night stay for less than $1 USD.
  • If you would like to purchase the service for 18 months for a single property (about 550 credits), you’ll get 30% off, which is 28 cents per day. Even if you just leave the service enabled at your property constantly, that is only $8.40 USD per month or $100 for a full year. Of course, if you choose to also disable the service when the property is vacant, it will cost you even less.
I’ve been using an Amazon Echo device at my property prior to implementing the Virtual Concierge. What differences should I be aware of after implementing AIPEX?
AIPEX Virtual Concierge leverages Amazon’s Alexa for Hospitality (AFH) program wherever it is available. Currently it is available in the US and UK, with more countries soon to come. If you are deploying in the US/UK, you will have access to special features such as:
  • Name Free Skill Invocation (NFSI): This is the capability for guests to ask questions directly of Alexa, instead of first having to open a skill in order to get access to your curated content. So for example if you have created a content item in our portal to recommend a local steakhouse, without NFSI guests would need to say: "Alexa, ask our host" and then after hearing the response, ask "what steakhouse do you recommend?" in order to get your curated recommendation. With NFSI, guests can just say: "Alexa, what steakhouse do you recommend?" to get your curated recommendation.
  • Centralized management and monitoring of all your Amazon Echo devices across all properties
  • Scale deployments without having to create individual Amazon accounts for each property
  • Online / Offline device status visibility
  • Hotel-grade Security and Privacy enhancements
  • Send custom notifications and announcements, in real-time or schedule in advance
When an Amazon Echo device is added to AFH, special microcode is applied that makes the device different from normal retail Echo devices. Once imported into the AIPEX system, your Echo device will no longer be managed via the Alexa App. This means that features you may have used with the Alexa App won’t be available anymore. For example:
  • Smart home controls (contact support@aipextech.com to enable)
  • Adding additional skills (contact support@aipextech.com to enable)
  • Routines
  • Drop-in
  • On devices with screens:
    • Amazon Photos slideshow
    • All use of the camera is disabled
How do I log in to the Virtual Concierge Portal?
Click here to access and bookmark the Portal. Use the email address that you provided when you signed up on our registration page. If you can’t remember your password, click the ‘Forgot Password?’ link on the portal login page and provide your email address. An email with a link to reset your password will be sent to you. If you can’t remember the email address that you used, Contact us, and provide your name and address. We will look up your account and provide that information.
What Alexa devices are supported for use in the US and UK?
  • Amazon Echo (2nd, 3rd, 4th generation)
  • Amazon Echo Dot (2nd, 3rd, 4th generation)
  • Amazon Echo Plus (1st, 2nd generation)
  • Amazon Echo Show 5 and Echo Show 8
Amazon Echo Show 8 is recommended. Please note the Echo Show 15 is not yet supported by Amazon.
Are properties located in US territories supported?
Amazon does not yet support Alexa for Hospitality in US territories. Please contact support@aipextech.com for options on deploying the AIPEX Virtual Concierge in these regions.
What does my Virtual Concierge subscription include?
In the US and UK, your subscription includes a license to use Alexa for Hospitality (AFH) on your device at no additional cost. This is a significant value, for which Amazon charges a monthly fee. The AFH fee covers the special software that is applied to the device, as well as the licensing for music available with the service (including streaming music from iHeartRadio and TuneIn). In addition, please see this page for a full list of features that your AIPEX Virtual Concierge includes.
Can I add more than one device to my property?
  • Yes, you can add as many devices to your property as you would like. Please keep in mind the following considerations:
    • Amazon charges on a per-device basis, so under our subscription model one credit is used per day for each device that is associated to a property.
    • 'Alexa Smart Properties for Hospitality' provides a code base that AIPEX uses to build special features for the virtual concierge experience. That code base does not yet support the ability for synchronized multi-device music streaming. In other words, a song can’t be playing throughout a property across multiple devices as if it was a single audio system.