The Google Assistant continues to be the star of Google I/O for the consecutively second year. With the technology being available for over a year, Google continues to add various features and is expanding the AI’s reach in Google’s expedition so as to dominate your home. In fact, Google Assistant is getting a lot smarter than Google now ever was. It has done a great job as the service supports more than one language, but soon it will also feature more robust third-party integration, which means then you can also control your entire digital life not just your Google life.
Assistant, meanwhile, is similar to Google Now, and allows you to ask questions and then delivers answers accordingly. The service goes beyond the messaging app Allo where it debuted, but now it is also featured in Google Home, which is Google’s answer to the Amazon Echo. Plus, it is found in all kinds of Android smartphones that are using Android Marshmallow or Nougat.
This way, you can expect to be talking to your phone a lot more in the coming years. Let’s explore what we can expect from this technology.
Visual Responses with Chromecast
Getting voice answers from your Google Home or your phone works well, but it certainly seems a great option to have a visual aid.
Google is leveraging Chromecast to do the same. So, next when you ask the Assistant something such as “what’s the weather” or “what’s on my calendar,” it will display answers on your TV. As the information is displayed on a screen, it allows the Assistant to offer a bit more information, such as extended forecasts or future appointments at a single glance. Most people owning Google Home must also have a Cast-enabled display, and it comes up with an easy set-up.
Google Assistant may come to the iPhone
Presently Google Assistant is stretching itself to all sorts of Android smartphones with Android Marshmallow and Nougat, however, what makes the headlines is that the digital assistant may soon come to Apple’s iOS as well. It is revealed by Dutch blog Geekster, which recently interviewed Gummi Hafsteinsson, who happens to be the product manager for Google Assistant. Even though Hafsteinsson didn’t directly assert that an iOS version of Assistant is in the making, but he provided a hint towards it.
“I do not think we have anything to announce at this point,” said Hafsteinsson in the interview. “But I think the general philosophy is that we would like to have the Assistant available to as many people as possible.”
Meanwhile, it will surely be exciting to see what an iOS version of Assistant appears like.
Assistant will allow you to make phone calls with Google Home
Now Google Home will be able to make direct phone calls to your contact list, without the requirement of any phone or a special app. This way you can make a quick phone call even when your hands are occupied. This feature is rolling out starting today for the folks the US and Canada.
Third-party Features to Take on Alexa
So far the biggest weakness of Google Home against the Echo (or the Assistant vs. Alexa) has been its lack of third-party support. With Alexa’s Skills SDK, developers can integrate Amazon’s assistant into a variety of hardware. Thus, in response to the aforementioned issue, Google made the big announcement that the Assistant is getting its own SDK, and takes the game of the digitization to a whole new level. Thus, now mobile Apps can integrate the Assistant into their own experiences, while the hardware can leverage the Assistant’s intelligence for hands-free control and tighter integration with your smartphone and Google services. We look forward to seeing more devices and apps to coming up with the Google Assistant support.
Google Assistant can take screenshots now
It now offers the feature to share one of the screens you are on. Like on Android devices that aren’t the Google Pixel, when you press and hold the home button, Screen Search will appear, which was earlier called Now on Tap. Screen Search can take and share a screenshot. This method was quite easier than the traditional method of holding down the volume button and power button for taking a screenshot.
When Google added the Assistant on the Pixel, Screen Search was there; however, the screenshot option wasn’t present. However, now as you press and hold the home button and swipe up, there will be an option to “Share Screenshot.” Meanwhile, it doesn’t work on your home screen as of now, so you’ll require relying on the traditional screenshot method. Still, the addition works well for people who are keen to take a cropped screenshot with one hand.
Google Assistant now on Android TV
Soon we will have Assistant being part of the overall Google ecosystem, which means on all types of Android-powered devices. As of now, Assistant is there on Android phone, and soon it will come to Android TV, as well. That won’t be just with first-party apps either. As per Google, you will be allowed to make commands like “Play Stranger Things on Netflix,” or “Tell me about Jurassic Park.” It will also be easier to control other areas of your smart home with commands such as “Dim the lights”.
It works best when you are in the mood of watching a movie. It is also expected that soon Assistant will be there on Android Wear, likely through the Android Wear 2.0 update. Nvidia Shield is the first Android TV device with an Assistant in it and will strike the other Android TV devices that run Android 6.0 Marshmallow and Android 7.0 Nougat.
It has been stated by I/O that Google sees the Assistant as the future of its search engine. This way it is simply a more natural way to ask the queries and accomplish tasks that we are already doing on a daily basis. Soon, we will see more devices and apps supporting the Assistant as Google goes on to make it one of your primary means to gather the information from the search company.