You may be able to start using Google Assistant without saying 'Hey Google'

Sep 2, 2021
Apps, Google, Mobile Computing

Google recently announced that two new features would be coming to Google Assistant. One of these features will even let you start using Google Assistant without having to say 'Hey Google.'

The first of the new features is called 'quick phrases.' It is this feature that will let you use Google Assistant without saying 'Hey Google' first. According to the report from Google, this feature will only work for the most common voice features, such as dismissing an alarm or timer.

These quick phrases are set to recognize the user's voice, which means that no one else will be able to activate 'quick phrases,' and it won't be activated just from picking up bits and pieces of conversation. You can choose which phrases you want to activate, such as setting the alarm by saying 'Set the alarm for 7 am.'

You may be able to start using Google Assistant without saying Hey Google

The second feature announced is codenamed 'guacamole' and was already spotted in April this year but has now been officially announced. This feature will enable a voice shortcuts page that will let you efficiently use voice commands to access specific shortcuts.

Along with 'quick phrases,' the latest Google app also incorporates dynamic shortcuts, which will allow Google Assistant to recommend shortcuts based on the apps you use frequently. Google already introduced dynamic shortcuts with the Android Nougat version. However, it would improve working with Google Assistant once the 'quick access' and 'guacamole' features come to Android devices.

For now, Google has not given a release date for when these features will be rolling out to Google Assistant. All we know is that it is set to be released later this year. Also, 'quick access' and 'guacamole' will be coming to most versions of Android. Still, the ability to switch off your phone with Google Assistant will be restricted to only Android 12 users.

There still isn't a lot of information available on how these features will work exactly. It makes me wonder what this will mean for users' privacy and how Google will ensure that users' privacy is respected when using these features.

Closing words

These new features coming to Google Assistant will make it much easier to use the Assistant with voice commands. However, there are still a few concerns around users' privacy that I would like to see addressed.


You may be able to start using Google Assistant without saying 'Hey Google'
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You may be able to start using Google Assistant without saying 'Hey Google'
One of the latest features will let you start using Google Assistant without having to say 'Hey Google', using quick phrases instead.
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  1. Jeff M.S. said on September 5, 2021 at 8:18 pm

    Smartphone only or Google Assistant devices also – that is not clear from this article

  2. Farmers said on September 3, 2021 at 4:01 pm

    I find the phrase ‘Ayup Google’ (ayup is a common word in the North of England) works just as well actually. Having said that, I rarely use the service anyway.

  3. Anonymous said on September 3, 2021 at 12:07 am

    Google #1 in surveillance. But Apple is catching up fast.

  4. Jonn said on September 2, 2021 at 11:13 pm

    I can’t be the only one eagerly awaiting it to just be customizable enough to respond to “Computer: What’s the stardate?” or “Jarvis, dial Ms. Potts.”

  5. Anonymous said on September 2, 2021 at 10:40 pm

    I doubt the words ‘Google’ and ‘privacy’ belong in the same story unless accompanied by a negative qualifier but it is incredibly handy to be able to say, “OK Google set timer ten minutes” when cooking, “OK Google good night” to shut down and switch off lights at night, etc.

    Despite the convenience, the responses at times are a testament to how blindingly stupid Google’s voice response robot is. Some of the ‘answers’ are confusing. For example, we are yet to work out the true meaning of “it will start raining at {number}AM and continue throughout the night”.

  6. ULBoom said on September 2, 2021 at 4:40 pm

    Not if it’s turned off as everyone I know does immediately when setting up a phone.

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