Skip to main content

Google Now expanding to third party applications

Motorola Moto X voice command
Image used with permission by copyright holder
Google’s voice command feature Google Now is finally open for use by developers in third-party apps. Users on Android will now be able to say “Ok Google” to control and navigate through a growing number of Play Store apps.

Google announced the expansion of the feature in a blog post, saying, “Today, we launched our first set of partners for custom Google voice actions on Android. This feature will enable people to say things like ‘OK Google, listen to NPR’ or ‘OK Google, show attractions near me on TripAdvisor.’”

Google’s “OK Google” voice command module has largely been viewed as an answer to Apple’s Siri. By opening its voice command feature to developers, Google is staying one step ahead of Apple, which has yet to allow Siri for use on non-native applications. Google’s voice command service currently recognizes  nine languages, including English, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, and Russian.

What Google’s voice control shares with Apple’s, however, is the goal of integration. Apple has been slowly adding Siri to all of its devices with the aim of reaching total cross-device integration. Google said of the voice command service, “It’s another way to drive usage of your app with Google. Users’ voice and text action requests can now lead directly to your Android app, so they can get to your native mobile experiences quickly and easily.”

So while Google may not be creating a multi-device home platform in the same fashion as Apple, the firm is certainly seeking to streamline processes for both their native and third-party applications. While current implementation is limited, Google Now will be expanding in the coming months as Google opens it up to more projects.

With this new update, it is easy to see why many believe that Google Now has outfoxed Apple’s Siri, and we certainly look forward to saying “Shazam this song!” and then seeing it happen before our eyes.

Editors' Recommendations

Andre Revilla
Andre Revilla is an entrepreneur and writer from Austin, TX that has been working in and covering the consumer tech space for…
Have the Android 14 beta on your Pixel? You need to download this update now
Google Pixel 7a held in hand showing home screen

Google revealed a bunch of new goodies during its opening keynote for Google I/O 2023, showing off its latest advancements in AI with Bard, as well as the brand new Pixel Fold and Pixel Tablet. There was also a sneak peek at upcoming features in Android 14, including new lock screen clocks, shortcuts, and generative AI wallpapers.

If you have a Pixel phone, like the new Pixel 7a or the older Pixel 7 or Pixel 7 Pro, then -- surprise -- Google is rolling out the Android 14 Beta 2 starting right now.

Read more
Everything announced at Google I/O 2023: Pixel Fold, Pixel 7a, and more
The Google I/O 2023 logo outside Mountain View.

Every year, Google takes to Google I/O to announce its plans and products for the coming year. While the event itself will run for several days, the opening keynote presentation covers all the major announcements, from the newest version of Android to the latest versions of the Pixel smartphones.

So, what did Google have in store for us with Google I/O 2023? Quite a lot! From the Pixel Fold to the Pixel 7a to a ton of AI updates and more, here are all of the biggest announcements from Google I/O 2023.
Google Pixel Fold

Read more
Forget ChatGPT — Siri and Google Assistant do these 4 things better
AI assistants compared with ChatGPT.

“Hey Google, Arbab!” I utter these lines to Google Assistant, which automatically takes me to my Twitter DMs with my friend Arbab. That chain of actions happens because I customized one such shortcut for Google Assistant on my phone. Putting the same prompt before ChatGPT, I get the predictably disappointing response: "I'm sorry, but as an AI language model, I do not have access to personal contact information such as phone numbers or email addresses.”

That’s just one of the dozen walls that you will run into if you seek to embrace ChatGPT while simultaneously ditching mainstream options like Google Assistant. One wonders why ChatGPT – considered by evangelists as the pinnacle of a consumer-facing AI in 2023 – fails miserably at something as fundamental as sending a message.

Read more