It’s been a long time coming but Google have finally launched a virtual assistant to rival the likes of Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana and Amazon’s Alexa. Building on Google’s existing ‘OK Google’ voice controls while improving experience of Google Now, here’s what you can expect from this state of the art technology.
What is it?
In the words of Google “The assistant is conversational – an ongoing two-way dialogue between you and Google that understands your world and helps you get things done.”
If you’re a fan and user of Google Now, you’ll be familiar with that impressive platform that manages to sync with your schedule, bringing up relevant information when you need it most. From meeting locations to hobbies, it delivers handy cards which remind you of an upcoming event or spark some inspiration throughout your day.
The ‘Ok Google’ voice control is similar to Apple’s Siri, allowing you to send messages, make basic commands and check your schedule. Building upon that software and combining it with Google Now, Google Assistant was created. It brings added convenience that’s designed to be far more immersive than anything on the market.
How it works
Currently, Google Assistant is only available on Google Pixel smartphones, but even those with an Android device or iPhone can make use of the assistant via the Google Allo app. That said, the experience is limiting on the app as the experience is far more integrated by using the Google smartphone.
To use Google Assistant, simply long press the home button of your Google smartphone and the interface will show up. Sounds similar to Siri or Cortana, right?! While it may seem like all the other virtual assistants, this platform is way more advanced.
Unlike its rivals, you’ll be able to ask an initial question followed by several follow up questions. Despite this more conversational approach, Google Assistant will be able to keep up, acknowledging and processing all of your speech to deliver an answer which meets the context.
Say for example that you ask Google Assistant for walking directions to your house, but then you add that you want to stop at a restaurant along the way. Or maybe you’re looking for restaurants in your local area but they must have a 5-star rating, include vegan options and you want to book instantly via OpenTable. All these requests are now possible in one fluid conversation.
As well as this, you’ll have access to all the common functions from asking about your current schedule to bringing up photos or asking to watch a film on Netflix.
When is it available?
Google Assistant is ready to use right now via the Google Allo app but as mentioned, this tech isn’t nearly as impressive unless it’s being used on a Google smartphone. Thankfully, all Google Pixel phones bought after 20th October should include Google Assistant, but be sure to check before buying. You won’t want to miss this smart and intuitive technology.