Tight Google Assistant integration is one of the best parts of Android, if you ask me, and the incredibly powerful service is getting beefed up with a suite of new features announced at CES 2019. There's a lot to break down, but the features I'm most excited about as a frequent flyer are the new travel-focused ones.
While there's no specific rollout date yet, Assistant will soon be able to notify you when your next flight is ready for check-in, and even handle the check-in directly, without having to open your various airline apps. Starting first with domestic flights through United, you'll be able to simply say "okay Google, check into my flight" and Assistant will do the rest for you — provided check-in is available, of course — without the need to list your booking confirmation number.
Google Assistant will also be able to store and view your boarding pass, displaying information like your frequent flyer number, confirmation number, and flight number.
In addition, you'll be able to book a hotel room straight from Google Assistant through partners including Choice Hotels, AccorHotels, InterContinental Hotels Group, Priceline, Expedia, Mirai, and Travelclick. If you're the type to plan out your travel with checklists and notes, Google is also bringing itinerary integration to Keep, Any.do, Bring!, and Todoist.
Interpreter Mode is yet another new feature coming to Google Assistant, coming in the next few weeks to Google Home devices and Assistant-powered smart displays. Once rolled out, you'll be able to tell your Assistant speaker "be my interpreter" to receive real-time translations to your language of choice. On smart displays, you'll receive spoken as well as written translations. Interestingly, there's no word on this feature coming to phones, but one can assume it's only a matter of time.
I've got four flights booked for the next month, so I'm definitely excited to try these new travel-centric features out — that's assuming, of course, that they'll be available by then. Here's hoping.
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Hayato was a product reviewer and video editor for Android Central.