In a case of going from nothing to everything, Nothing has announced that its Ear 1 true wireless earbuds now support pretty much every voice assistant you could ask for, including Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri (depending on your phone). That’s a big shift from 2021, when the Ear 1 was launched without any voice assistant support at all.
The move comes as something of a surprise given that the company told Android Central that it had no plans to add voice assistant access. Nothing announced the change via a tweet on February 7 that encouraged Ear 1 owners to install a firmware update via the Nothing Ear 1 app.
Alexa, play "Nothing Else Matters"
Yeah, it's time to say hey to Google and Siri.
Voice Assistance is now available for your ear (1).
— Nothing (@nothing) February 7, 2022
Android and iOS users will both have the ability to use Alexa with the new update, but only Android users can choose to use Google Assistant with the Ear 1. That’s because Google recently removed the ability for any wireless headphones or earbuds to access the Google Assistant when connected to an iOS product.
Nonetheless, this new feature addresses one of the very few criticisms our reviewer found when he put the Ear 1 through their paces, making these $99 wireless earbuds an even better value.
As welcome as voice assistant access clearly is, not everyone is as pleased with how Nothing is enabling the feature on the Ear 1. It requires the use of a triple-tap gesture and this can’t be changed within the Ear 1 app. As one Twitter user points out, it might not be the best way Nothing could have chosen to incorporate voice assistant access:
Good update but bad execution. What if one is riding a bike and needs to play the music or call.. how am I supposed to triple-tap first while riding. Shouldn't it work on voice alone .. or may be , if nothing, tap and hold?
— Saleem (@Saleem_Hassan7) February 7, 2022
It seems that several other Ear 1 users would prefer a tap-and-hold option instead of the triple-tap. We’re going to run the update ourselves and see how it works. Once we’ve given it a proper test, we’ll update our Ear 1 review with the details, and — if it lives up to its promise — possibly reconsider our current 8/10 score.
- 9 Sonos tips, tricks, and little-known features
- What is Tidal? The hi-fi streaming music service fully explained
- The U.K. wants to break up Google and Apple’s cloud gaming stranglehold
- The most common Wi-Fi problems and how to fix them
- What is aptX? Cutting through the clutter of Qualcomm’s codecs