What you need to know
- It is finally possible to use Assistant voice commands to open and work with other Android apps.
- You can now do things like starting a run, posting on social media, ordering food, hailing a ride, and more – with just your voice.
- It is also possible to set custom shortcut phrases for the most common tasks.
Google has added several new features to the Assistant this year, making it better and more helpful to users. The virtual assistant is now gaining the ability to open up, search, and perform frequent tasks across your favorite apps. As long as you have an Android phone that is Assistant-enabled, you will be able to open and search within Android apps using "Hey Google."
For example, you can say, "Hey Google, search for memory quilts on Etsy" to find exactly what you're looking for. You can also use voice commands to perform frequent tasks such as playing music in Spotify, starting a run in Nike Run Club, posting on Snapchat, ordering food on Postmates, checking the status of an order on Walmart, hailing an Uber ride, or checking the news on Twitter.
You can even create custom shortcut phrases for the most common tasks. To create a custom shortcut phrase, just say "Hey Google, show my shortcuts." You can then explore suggested shortcuts or create one of your own from the settings screen.
You will be able to do more with your voice starting today with over 30 of the top apps available on the Play Store globally in English. Google says the Assistant will be able to work with more apps in the near future.
To help Android developers bring Google Assistant to their apps, Google has introduced new updates to App Actions. The updates allow developers to map users' intents to specific functionality within their apps. In addition to Google's own catalog, which includes over 60 intents, app developers can create custom intents too.
Google will also recommend relevant Apps Actions to users, so they can discover all the different actions that are available. For example, if you say "Hey Google, show me Taylor Swift," the Assistant will highlight a suggestion chip guiding the user to open the search result for Taylor Swift in Twitter.
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