The Google Assistant is incredibly versatile, providing literally a million different features while coming pre-installed on nearly every modern Android device. It can set alarms for you, play music for you, roll a magic 8 ball for you and even tell you your position in the Harry Potter game of Quidditch. While it provides all this functionality, one of the things that it couldn’t do for you, strangely enough, is let you set a custom song as an alarm, instead requiring you to use a default provided alarm sound. Google is fixing that, and while they’re at it they’re also introducing a feature to allow users to look up TV show schedules on all your favorite channels.
What are the new features?
To set an alarm to music, you used to have to store the song you wanted on your device. Now, you can just tell the Assistant to “set an alarm for 7AM that plays Bob Dylan,” and it’ll wake you up to whatever artist, song, or playlist you asked for.
The alarms work with whichever music service you’ve set the Assistant to use by default, so Spotify and Pandora, for instance, can both be used. You’ll also be able to use any songs uploaded to your Google Play Music library.
The new ability to look up TV schedules is about as straightforward as it sounds: you ask “when is Doctor Who on next?” and it’ll tell you when the next new episode or rerun is going to be. You can also ask “which channel airs The Good Place?” to get channel information and play time for the next new episode. Both questions mostly work, though results may not come up correctly for every TV show.
It doesn’t stop there as you can ask the Google Assistant when your favorite show will air, but you can ask it to remind you just in case you forget. When it reminds you, you can then use Google Cast (provided you have a supported device) and ask Google to play the show for you. With the introduction of these new TV show features, Google has also partnered with Netflix to ensure that you can pick up where you left off if you want to use voice functionality to play a show. Simply link your Google account to your Netflix account and get playing!
These features have been added to the Google Assistant, meaning that they won’t only work on your Android phone but will work on any of your Google Assistant enabled devices like the Google Home or Home Mini. Google is continuing to add even more features to the Google Assistant in an attempt to make it the most powerful virtual assistant on the market and surpass its competitors like Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri. You can check out the announcement below.
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