Google Assistant Removes 17 Features to Enhance User Experience
Google Assistant, the widely used voice assistant, is undergoing some changes to improve its "quality and reliability" across devices. In a recent blog post, Google announced that they will be removing 17 features from the Assistant starting from January 26.
Changes to Take Effect from January 26
Starting from January 26, users attempting to use any of the 17 features that are being removed will receive a notification stating that they are no longer available. According to reports from 9to5Google, most of these features will be completely removed by February 26.
List of Features Being Removed
The features that will no longer be available on Google Assistant include:
- Controlling audiobooks on Google Play Books by voice.
- Cookbook management, such as transferring recipes, instructional videos, and step-by-step guides.
- Setting media, music, or radio alarms on Google Assistant devices.
- Stopwatch management on Smart Displays and Speakers.
- Voice calling a device or broadcasting to your Google Family Group.
- Sending emails, video, or audio messages with your voice.
- Asking for contact information.
- App Launcher in Google Assistant driving mode on Google Maps for messages and calls.
- Voice control for activities on Fitbit Sense and Versa 3 devices.
- Caller ID display for calls from speakers and Smart Displays.
- Voice-checking personal travel itineraries.
- Voice actions like sending payments, making reservations, or posting on social media.
Although these features are being removed, users can still perform alternative actions using Google Assistant. For example, instead of controlling audiobooks on Google Play Books by voice, users can still cast them from their mobile devices. Similarly, users can still make calls and send text messages, even though sending emails, video, or audio messages will no longer be supported.
Refinements to the Google App
In addition to the removal of certain features, Google is also refining its Google app. Now, when users tap the microphone icon, the Google app will trigger search responses. However, it's important to note that the microphone icon will no longer control smart home devices or send messages. This change also applies to the Pixel Search bar, which will now trigger Voice Search instead of Assistant.
These changes aim to enhance the user experience by streamlining the functionality of Google Assistant and ensuring its reliability across various devices. Users can still enjoy a wide range of features and actions offered by the Assistant, and these updates will help make the voice assistant easier to use and more efficient.