Google Assistant is now the default voice assistant on millions of devices, thanks to an update to the Google app.
If you’ve been dying to use Google Assistant, you may be in luck. Google is currently rolling out a big update to its app that enables Google Assistant on smartphones running Android version 6.0 Marshmallow or higher.
Considering there are more than a billion activated Android devices, a rough estimation makes that likely more than 300 million smartphones and tablets — minus devices with less than 1.5GB of RAM or a non-HD display. That’s according to Android’s distribution numbers, which put Marshmallow and Nougat’s adoption at 31.9 percent of active Android devices.
Up until now, the only phone with Assistant, Google’s artificially intelligent bot, has been the company’s own devices — Pixel and Pixel XL. LG unveiled the G6 at Mobile World Congress in conjunction with Google’s announcement, as it is the first phone to launch with Google Assistant after the Pixel.
We stopped by Google’s Android Global Village here at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona to take a look at a few Android devices running Assistant. Devices like the Moto Z, LG V20, LG G6, Sony Xperia X, the Nokia 6, and more were all on display with Assistant functionality.
Google Assistant can be triggered by pressing and holding the home button, or by saying “OK Google.” It lets you search queries like “what’s the weather,” “where’s the nearest gas station.” and “when’s my next flight,” but it’s more personable and you can ask it things like, “where are you from,” to dig deep into the Assistant’s history.
As Assistant on the Pixel recently received the ability to control smart home appliances — like Assistant on Google Home — all these millions of smartphones will now be able to do so as well. If you have a Chromecast, for example, you can ask Assistant to cast “Stranger Things” on Netflix to your TV.
Again, the only requirements for using Assistant on your Android phone is that you need to have a device running Android 6.0 or higher, and you need to have 1.5GB of RAM or more, and a 720p display or higher. Check the Google Play Store to see if you have an update waiting for the Google app, and if not you may have to wait until it fully rolls out.