Google Assistant redesign adds bigger visuals, simple smart home control

Gerald Bowen
October 4, 2018

Paid digital goods are thus far only available in the USA, but Google said that it plans to roll them out in additional countries soon. Assistant users will be able to use Google's Sign-In for the Assistant protocols, once app developers implement it, to seamlessly sign into their Google accounts without typing passwords. These new monetization options will be available both through devices like the Google Home smart speaker, as well as Google Assistant-powered smart displays and phones.

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Google announced this path to monetize voice experiences as it unveiled a revamped Google Assistant experience on mobile, where users will now have it easier to switch back and forth between using their voice and touch. Part on-demand, part push notifications, and a bunch of "we know you better than you know you", Google Assistant manages your calendar, searches, contacts, commutes, and so much more. With the latest makeover, Google wants Assistant to be easier to control "whether you prefer to use your hands, your voice, or a combination of the two".

For example, when you ask Google Assistant to dim your lights, it will now show you the relevant slider and will let you adjust the dimmer right from the Google Assistant screen. Once you're in the Assistant (Long press that home button) and swipe up on your screen to see a list of what's happening in your day and recent interactions with the Assistant. Food Network has bigger photos of its recipes, while FitStar displays images of the workouts you look up to provide a quick reference of how to execute particular exercises. Let us know what device and country you are commenting from.

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