Google Assistant Routines seem to be working on third-party speakers

Google Assistant Routines
Google Assistant Routines (Image credit: Ara Wagoner / Android Central)

Google Assistant has only had custom routines for a few months now, but it's made quite the impression, especially with the scheduled routines option that rolled out the ability to schedule routines so that they activate on a specific Google Assistant speaker at specific days and times. Scheduled, custom routines make Google Assistant my favorite alarm clock, but there's been a slight snag in using them the last two weeks.

They weren't working on any Google Assistant speakers outside the Google Home line.

Updated September 14, 2018: Routines are working again; Continued Conversation is not

Voice-activated and scheduled routines have begun working on third-party Google Assistant-powered speakers again for many users who reported the original problem on the Google Assistant Help Community. As a note when testing scheduled Routines on both of my third-party speakers, the first scheduled routines I tested with both speakers failed but every scheduled routine since has been working properly. Continued Conversation is still broken on third-party speakers, but at least Routines are working again.

Insignia Voice users have been the most vocal about Routines being broken, both on /r/GoogleHome and on the Google Assistant Help Community, but users of other Google Assistant speakers including the Sony S50G, the TicHome Mini, and JBL Link speakers have reported Google Assistant Routines failing in the following ways:

  • Scheduled routines stopped firing after weeks of consistent performance
  • Custom routines that date back to the Shortcuts days were suddenly producing "I don't know how to help with that yet"
  • "Good morning" still seemed to work, but not "good night," nor any of the other ready-made routines

Since Google Assistant doesn't have a support line, only Google Home, users who contact Google through the Home app or Google Home website are being told to contact the manufacturers. That said, with the impacts being felt across most if not all third-party Google Assistant speakers, this seems to be a server-side issue on Google's end. Some Google Home users have been seeing more sporadic issues with Routines the last two weeks, but none of the persistent failures that third-party Google Assistant speakers are seeing.

Insignia Voice and Google Home

In my testing, routines are failing altogether on TicHome Mini and Insignia Voice while my Google Home is still executing scheduled and voice-activated routines. The Music action in And then play... for routines now seems locked to the primary music service, whereas before you could specify an alternate music service, but otherwise, Routines are working normally on Google Home.

Are ready-made or custom routines working on your Google Assistant speakers? Can you schedule custom routines and are they actually firing at the designated times? Let us know in the comments below!

Updated September 14, 2018: This post has been updated with the appearance of a fix for routines on third-party Google Assistant speakers.

Ara Wagoner

Ara Wagoner was a staff writer at Android Central. She themes phones and pokes YouTube Music with a stick. When she's not writing about cases, Chromebooks, or customization, she's wandering around Walt Disney World. If you see her without headphones, RUN. You can follow her on Twitter at @arawagco.