In honor of all of the hard-working mothers and for Mother’s day, Google Assistant is picking up a handful of new and useful features. First, off, you’ll officially be able to utilize the popular Broadcast feature outside of your home to send quick voice announcements to family members! Previously, this feature was only possible on Nest devices, but now it’s expanding to Android and iPhone.
Basically, all you’ll need to do is say “Hey Google, tell my family ___________” or “Hey Google, broadcast ____________”. Then, that message will be announced to the members of your household at home (meaning those in your Family Group) over Nest speakers and smart displays and even to their phones where they can reply with one tap using smart compose-style answers – I suppose the phone call really us dead.
Next, Google is allowing its Family Bell feature to operate with eight new languages – Dutch, French, German, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, and Spanish! Not only that, but soon, you’ll be able to say ‘Stop’ when a Family Bell fires off in order to halt it, instead of having to say “Hey Google, Stop!” This is only going to work in English at first, but the creation of Bells will now work in all of the aforementioned languages – sweet!
Also, the kiddos will have new stories to fall asleep to and games to play using Google Assistant’s Family Tab section. The inner child in me loves that Google has now partnered with Pottermore Publishing to bring in some Harry Potter-themed stories! Right now, you’ll be able to say “Hey Google, tell me a Quidditch Story”. The rest of whatever it is they have planned will be rolling out later this year.
Additionally, the “Who Was?” series from Penguin Random House will be available on smart displays for an interactive audio storytelling experience centered around iconic individuals like Jane Goodall, Michael Jordan, Leonardo Da Vinci, and nearly 100 others! Just say “Hey Google, talk to Who Was Heroes” to get started when this rolls out!
For those games I mentioned, well, ‘Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?” will be available for you to embarrass yourself against your children’s knowledge of things you learned in school decades ago and forgot, so yeah – enjoy! Oh, and while you’re at it, use a timer on Mother’s Day if you’re interested in seeing a little surprise. Lastly, to pair with the popular handwashing song that Assistant can sing to help your child stay clean and free of germs, a few new songs are available for other important tasks. Try saying “Hey Google, Sing the cleanup song,” “Hey Google, Sing the go to sleep song” or “Hey Google, Sing the brush your teeth song.”