Google Assistant Tips And Tricks

Google is going big on its Assistant. The feature is now available for any smartphone with at least Android Marshmallow, and more and more people are using it to help optimize their daily lives. These tips and tricks will help you master the Google Assistant and make the most of your new helper.

Set up Google Assistant for the first time

If you've never used Google Assistant before, don't worry - despite its complex capabilities, it is simple to set up. If your phone is running any version of Android from Marshmallow and up, then long press the home button to open Google Assistant (or say "OK Google" if your voice activation is already turned on). If you don't have Google Assistant yet, the update is coming to you soon.
  • Start Google Assistant by long pressing the Home button.
  • On the "Meet your Google Assistant" screen, tap Continue.
  • Give it permission to access the information it needs to function by tapping Yes, I'm in.

Customizing Google Assistant

Select the right Google account: The first thing you should do is make sure that you've selected your primary Google account if you have more than one. Start up Google Assistant, tap the three dots menu icon on the top right to open the menu, and tap Account, then select the one you want to use.
Accessing your settings: Start up Google Assistant, tap the three dots menu icon on the top right to open the menu, and tap Settings. Then, you'll see a list that includes settings for Home control, News, My Day and Shopping list.
To set up your preferred news sources: Go to the Settings, tap News, then tap Customize. Select all the news sources you want, then tap the back arrow. You'll then see a list of your selected news sources, which you can drag around to re-order based on priority. To listen to your customized news later, simply say "Listen to the news."
To set up your My Day summary: Go to the Settings menu and tap My Day. Select what you want to be part of your daily overview. Your choices include weather, work commute, next meeting, reminders and news. When you want Google to tell you what's on your agenda for the day, then simply say "Tell me about my day."
google assistant customize news my day summary

Google Assistant tips you'll use in everyday life

The basics

Getting Google Assistant to do things for you is easy. Instead of memorizing a bunch of robotic commands, you can speak to it in a conversational manner. It feels very natural, and you will rarely ever have to stop and wonder if you're phrasing something the right way. You probably noticed from the section above that the phrases you say to get Google Assistant to play the news or read you a summary of your day are just like something you would say to a human. Here's an example: if you want Google Assistant to pull up the YouTube app for you, just say "Open YouTube". It's as simple as that. Here are some basic things you can do with Google Assistant to get you started:
Tips simply for convenience:
  • Ask Google Assistant a question to find answers hands-free
  • Tell it to play a song by a particular artist
  • Ask it about the current weather
Tricks to never drop the ball in your daily life:
  • Use Google Assistant to check your calendar for today
  • Tell is to set alarms, reminders and timers 
Tricks for staying in the loop:
  • Google Assistant can make calls to contacts
  • Reading and replying to messages
Use Smart Unlock: If you are using a Pixel device, you can setup Assistant to unlock your phone when it hears "OK Google". Don't worry, it will only unlock if it recognizes your voice. Head over to the settings and select 'adjust settings for this Pixel device'. From there you will find 'OK Google detection', where you can turn on a 'Trusted Voice' and give Assistant permission to unlock your phone when it hears you ask it to.

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