Android Police

Google Assistant

13

Get two Google Homes and a Nest Mini for an insanely low $99 ($148 off)

Being quarantined might make you realize you're missing a couple of smart speakers at home. Whether you want to set up a new infrastructure or extend the existing one, this insane deal lets you grab three speakers for just $99. The package includes two Google Homes, as well as a free Nest Mini, which would typically cost $247 when sold separately.

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25

Google Assistant has a horrible song to help make sure you wash your hands long enough

As the spread of the novel coronavirus continues, health officials have one advisory above all others: you need to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds to make sure they're virus-free. Google's getting in on that action: you can now ask the Assistant for help washing your hands to hear a terrible song about it.

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8

Google Assistant can now send Line messages

Assistant is a convenient way of interacting with your phone when your hands aren't free, especially when driving or cooking. Google's helper can already send messages over native and third-party apps, such as WhatsApp, Viber, Telegram, and WeChat. The service just got the ability to do so with Line, too, making it easier for users to keep in touch with friends without touching their device.

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28

G Suite users are starting to get the Pixel 4's new Google Assistant (Update: Full rollout)

After launching with a tons of little restrictions, the new Google Assistant interface is spreading to more and more devices. It's no longer restricted to US English, has added Japanese support, and doesn't require gesture navigations anymore. Another limitation is now slowly being abolished: incompatibility with G Suite accounts.

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63

Google rolls out redesigned, reorganized Assistant updates tab (Updated)

Google's new, less intrusive Assistant is already available on the Pixel 4, but the redesign it received has mostly affected the voice command interface. The updates tab, Google Now's spiritual successor, kept the same look. Now, Google appears to be testing an overhauled dashboard with more gradients and chronological organization.

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17

Google Assistant finally supports sensors and smoke detectors, paving the way for smarter alerts and automations

One of the cornerstones of the smart home are automations that get triggered based on certain conditions. SmartThings, Wink, and other hubs built their whole proposition on top of that, but then voice assistants came and shook that foundation. Voice commands, and thus active requests, became the focus, but that didn't stop everyone from bemoaning the loss of passive automations. To implemented that functionality you need sensors, and Google Assistant is finally adding native support for them.

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10

B&O's new Beosound Balance speaker has Google Assistant and a $2,250 price tag

Audiophiles have long been happy to spend what most of us would consider obscene amounts of money on speakers, and these ultra-premium products are slowly adopting "smart" features like Google Assistant. Bang & Olufsen has a new Assistant-powered speaker called the Beosound Balance. It'll cost you $2,250, but it probably sounds pretty good.

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29

John Legend's Google Assistant cameo voice goes away March 23

Not even a year after the great John Legend lent his voice to Google Assistant, it's been made clear that his graces are indeed only temporary. Google has announced that his cameo voice will no longer be available from March 23.

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25

Tell Google Assistant to 'Read It,' including webpages translated from 42 languages

The ways we experience media on the web tend to be designed only for the publisher's intended medium. You don't consume videos just for their sound, for example, and podcasts don't often come with word-for-word transcripts, but there are ways of enjoying those pieces of content with augmentation. Some of the toughest challenges in making text sites cross-consumable via dictation has been in naturalizing machine voices and translating stories rich in grammatical tapestry from other languages. Google Assistant is now bringing its answers to those challenges with new text-to-speech functionality available today.

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27

The new Google Assistant bugs out when you try to start a routine from the Home app

Despite launching with the Pixel 4 several months ago, the new Google Assistant still carries many restrictions, which make it practically unavailable for the grand majority of Android users. This limitation is a good thing, though, because it gives Google time to iron out bugs like the one we'll describe below: The Google Home app fails to start a routine if you're using this new Assistant.

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