You heard it right! Who wouldn’t love an always available, prompt, intelligent, punctual and well organised assistant by your side unconditionally? Well, this Android assistant is just one of a kind, perfect for the job atleast for me! Known as Google Assistant, is one of the so called “digital assistant” available for mobile devices in this case for Google’s Android Phones. I was skeptical and reluctant to use it at the begining as I always felt these features are more of a gimmick than the useful thing for general public. But this time I was wrong. It is in fact a very intuitive, context based and as and when required information being pushed by the assistant as opposed to “pull” architecture which was tried on google now and other earlier iterations of assistants. It really makes most of my work and personal data management on the tip of my fingers… ooops!! …I meant to say …on tip of my tongue really 😀
Want to know what all I ask my assistant to do? .. here they are…
- Just say “Good Morning” or “Good Evening” based on your time of day and your assistant will tell you about your appointments, weather, and news! Currently you get only international news, I am pretty sure more sources will be added.
- Is preparing the shopping list is very cumbersome? Not any more! Just say “Add Books to my shopping list” that’s it. Your assistant will add Books to your google Keep list. From tomorrow 10th April it will be move do dedicated place within google app.
- You want a reminder to call your coworker while you are at office tomorrow? Just say “Add reminder to call Praveen at work tomorrow”, you assistant will will remind tomorrow as you reach your work location!. You can also setup reminders based on time. Isn’t that simple than pulling those pen an paper out? Please note in the google assistant settings you setup your home and work locations once.
- Got a email to attend the meeting on coming Friday at 2 PM”? wait don’t pull your pen yet! just say “Add a event on Friday”, assistant will ask you “what time”, say “2 PM”, and you will be prompted for “Whats the title”, say “Meeting on IT budget” and your appointment is set on your calendar! Cool .. huh? Not yet over… read on…
- You wanna send your wife a text that you will be late? … Say “Text Vidya I’ll be late”. Your assistant will do it for you. Wait a minute… you can also use your favorite WhatsApp to send a message! How? say “Send message to Praveen”, you will be prompted to say “Whatsapp”, “Hangouts” or “Messaging” (based on what you have installed and what is supported currently) and you say “WhatsApp”, it will do that job for you.
- Create nicknames, you can create nickname “wife” for your 😉 wife 😉 and thereby just can say “Call my wife” to make a phone call or any other instruction henceforth. You can also create nicknames “son, daughter, mom, dad etc”.
- You can set alarms, get weather, find nearest pizza place, get translations done, get directions, set timers so on.
- You can also ask for information, such as “When was Taj Mahal built?” Or “How old is Aishwarya Rai”, ask assistant to play a song of your choice, open applications for you, I was surprised when I asked “What is the flight status of JetAir 12345?” And got a reply that “On time” 😲
- You can also get notifications on your little widget about your bill payments, purchase delivery status, flight info and schedules (based on your emails in your gmail inbox) without you doing a thing!
- You can also tell your assistant a secret, like my mobile phone password is 1234, and recall it later. You can do normal conversation with your assistant as you would do with humans, hmmmm… may be we all will turn into Androids one day! 😁
- Interesting? There are tons of uses, it can also interact with home automation etc. I feel there is big potential here as your assistant starts learning about you, it will be able to do lot more in the future. Yes there are privacy concerns, and safety issues too, but as with everything there, you be your own judge. If you think you want that convenience then head-over and say “OK Google” or long press your home button and start talking.
Now how to get it? If you are one of the users with latest Android Nougat then most likely you already have them. Just configure them by long pressing home button. If you are on Marshmallow (Android 6) then there is a way to get it to your phone. Check my post here to get Google Assistant on your phone.
Have a question? Or something interesting I missed? Post below.
Good luck (to you two) 😍