Amazon Sidewalk is a low-bandwidth, shared network designed to extend the range and functionality of Amazon smart devices. While the technology offers several benefits, some users may want to opt-out due to privacy concerns or other reasons. In this article, we’ll discuss how Amazon automatically opts users into Sidewalk, the devices that are included, and the process for opting out. We will also cover the potential advantages and disadvantages of participating in Amazon Sidewalk.
Understanding Amazon Sidewalk’s Default Opt-In
Amazon Sidewalk is automatically enabled for all compatible devices, meaning users are opted in by default. The goal behind this automatic enrollment is to create a more extensive and robust network, enhancing the user experience for everyone. However, this default opt-in has raised concerns for those who prefer to maintain control over their devices and networks. In the following sections, we will address which devices are included and how to opt-out if you prefer not to participate.
Devices Included in Amazon Sidewalk
Amazon Sidewalk is compatible with several devices, including:
- Echo devices (3rd generation and newer)
- Ring Floodlight Cam
- Ring Spotlight Cam Wired
- Ring Spotlight Cam Mount
- Amazon Echo Dot (3rd generation and newer)
- Amazon Echo Plus (all generations)
- Amazon Echo Show (2nd generation and newer)
- Amazon Echo Studio
As Amazon continues to develop and expand its product line, it’s possible that more devices will be added to this list in the future.
How to Disable Amazon Sidewalk
Time needed: 2 minutes
If you wish to disable Amazon Sidewalk, follow these steps:
- Open the Amazon Alexa app on your smartphone or tablet.
- Tap on “More” located at the bottom right corner of the screen.
- Select “Settings” from the menu.
- Scroll down and tap on “Account Settings.”
- Locate and tap on “Amazon Sidewalk.”
- Toggle the switch to “Disabled” to opt out.
Keep in mind that opting out will disconnect your devices from the shared network, potentially reducing their range and functionality. However, you can always opt back in by following the same steps and toggling the switch back to “Enabled.”
Reasons to Disable of Amazon Sidewalk
Despite the benefits that Amazon advertises, there are valid reasons for opting out of Amazon Sidewalk, such as:
- Privacy concerns: Although Amazon has implemented security measures to protect user data, some individuals may still be uncomfortable with the idea of sharing their network with neighbours.
- Bandwidth usage: Sidewalk uses a small portion of your internet bandwidth, which may be a concern for users with limited data plans or slow internet connections.
- Control over devices: Users who prefer to maintain strict control over their
- devices and networks may choose to opt out of Amazon Sidewalk to ensure their devices are not part of a shared network.
- Potential interference: While Amazon Sidewalk operates on a low-bandwidth frequency, some users may still worry about the potential for interference with other wireless networks or devices.
- Device compatibility: Users who do not have many compatible devices may not see the full benefits of Amazon Sidewalk, making it less appealing to participate in the shared network.
Benefits of Enabling Amazon Sidewalk
Despite the reasons for opting out of Amazon Sidewalk, there are several advantages to Amazon Sidewalk that may make you reconsider, such as:
- Improved device connectivity: Sidewalk helps devices like security cameras, smart lights, and smart locks stay connected even when they’re at the edge of your Wi-Fi network’s range.
- Enhanced device performance: Amazon Sidewalk can help maintain a reliable connection for your devices, enabling them to perform their functions seamlessly.
- Simplified device setup: Setting up new devices on Sidewalk is easier as it automatically connects compatible devices to the network.
- Community benefits: A robust Sidewalk network can provide a better user experience for everyone, as it allows devices to connect to the nearest Sidewalk-enabled device, even when it’s owned by a neighbour.
Amazon Sidewalk offers various benefits, including improved device connectivity, enhanced performance, and simplified device setup. However, some users may prefer to opt out due to privacy concerns, bandwidth usage, the desire for control over their devices, potential interference, or device compatibility issues. Weighing the pros and cons of participating in Amazon Sidewalk is essential to make an informed decision that best suits your needs and preferences. If you choose to opt out, follow the steps outlined above to disable Amazon Sidewalk for your devices.