Google Assistant Updated With Ton Of Revolutionary Features
On the 7th of May 2019, Google held the I/O developers conference in Mountain View, California. As expected, it unveiled the long-anticipated Pixel 3a smartphone duo. The other notable product launched at the event was the Nest Hub Max which is the companies second-generation smart display. Other than the aforementioned hardware and software announcement, the company showcased new features for Google Assistant which are nothing short of groundbreaking.
Offline Centric Update
With the latest update, Google has primarily focussed on providing the existing features of the Assistant application without the need for an active internet connection. The company states that the new update completely changes how the data processing on the assistant is achieved. Previously, the inputs provided to the assistant was computed on the company’s data centres. But, following the update, all the data will be processed locally on the device itself. Noteworthy, Google has managed to shrink 100 GB of speech recognition and language understanding data to a bite-size 0.5 GB. Therefore, it can be locally stored on a smartphone or tablet, resulting in a reduction of latency to a greater extent.
The company claims that the updated Assistant can process requests up to 10 times faster. Furthermore, users can even multitask across different applications with the help of the voice assistant. The requirement for saying ‘Hey Google’ prefix before every command has also been eliminated. Consequently, users can have a human-like conversation with a virtual assistant. However, the next generation Assistant which rolls out later this year will only be limited to Pixel phones for an uncertain period.
Duplex Makes Its Way To The Web
Last year Google introduced Duplex technology, which is intended towards simplifying tasks that are usually performed manually. Originally, it could make phone calls on behalf of the user which in itself is a praiseworthy feature. After the update, it will also be able to handle certain processes which are a common affair like buying movie tickets online or booking a taxi. Duplex is able to achieve the said tasks by auto-filling the details of the users which greatly reduce the effort and time that it normally requires. The updated abilities will make their way to the app later this year in the US and UK for Android devices.
As the title suggests, Google assistant, after the update will be able to provide answers or execute tasks based on the personal references of an individual. For example, if the assistant has been informed about a particular contact, the assistant can answer questions about events like birthday or other relevant events based on the provided information. Another reference could be asking whether details of a friend’s place. Given, the assistant is aware of their location.
Furthermore, the assistant can also recommend suggestions based on past choices and decisions. The newly launched ‘Nest Smart Hub’ with the help of updated assistant will provide personalized suggestions starting with recipes, events and podcasts. For example, If a user asks for dinner recommendations, the assistant would answer based on past choices. Therefore, would suggest food dishes from a particular cuisine if the user had previously ordered a particular dish.
Driving Mode Built Into The Assistant
Even though driving mode has been available on Android devices for quite some time, its adaption has been rather limited. With the updated Google assistant, the company intends to change that. The driving mode built into the assistant can be easily toggled with the help of voice command “Hey Google, let’s drive”. The mode when turned on displays the on-screen content in a particular manner which custom tailored to the user.
Impressively, if a contact calls while driving, the assistant will speak aloud their details based on which the user can accept or decline the incoming call with a voice command. In addition, other tasks like messaging or asking for navigation can all be achieved with voice command, hands-free.
Furthermore, the updated Google assistant can turn on the air conditioner in the user’s car before they reach, implied the vehicle supports the functionality. Last but not least, an ongoing alarm can be turned off via the ‘stop’ voice command.