Issa Rae makes a cameo as the new Google Assistant voice

Google Assistant Voice Issa Rae
Google Assistant Voice Issa Rae (Image credit: Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Issa Rae is the second celebrity cameo voice for Google Assistant.
  • This free addition is available only in the United States.
  • Cameo voices for Assistant only work for specific replies, not for every response.

Google is bringing comedy gold to its Assistant with Issa Rae's voice, starting today. The comedian and actress who gained fame from her YouTube series, Awkward Black Girl, can now be heard on any device with Google Assistant built-in. It's as easy as flipping over to the Issa Rae cameo voice within Google Assistant's settings on your phone, or just by saying "Hey Google, talk like Issa".

Issa's voice will be available for free in English on any US-based Android, iOS, smart speaker or smart display that has Google Assistant packed inside.

Earlier this year, Google added a number of additional voices to Google Assistant, all color-coded and in blissful harmonious order. Issa's voice join's John Legend as the second celebrity cameo voice to replace those built-in Assistant voices. That totals 12 voices in all, with 10 being original Google-built voices.

Issa Rae as Google Assistant

Source: Google (Image credit: Source: Google)

Just as with the John Legend cameo voice, Issa's voice will only be used for specific replies, while the standard Google Assistant voice you choose will be used for all other queries.

Amazon recently announced that it, too, would be bringing celebrity voices to its own virtual assistant Alexa later this year, starting with Samuel L. Jackson.

As with any Google product, you'll find a number of Easter eggs as you interact with Issa via Google Assistant. Some suggestions include "Hey Google, do you love Daniel or Lawrence more?" or "Hey Google, tell me something awkward." Folks who are familiar with Issa Rae's work will surely understand the references here. Google will be posting more Easter eggs on its Instagram account today, and there will undoubtedly be plenty to find in the months to come too.

How to change your Google Assistant's voice

Nicholas Sutrich
Senior Content Producer — Smartphones & VR
Nick started with DOS and NES and uses those fond memories of floppy disks and cartridges to fuel his opinions on modern tech. Whether it's VR, smart home gadgets, or something else that beeps and boops, he's been writing about it since 2011. Reach him on Twitter or Instagram @Gwanatu