First up, the ability to create better lists and takes notes with the digital assistant. That means you can create a gift list if you need to while you’re out and about just by saying, “Create a gift list”. You can also ask things like, “What’s on my to-do list?” and “Show me my last note”. Google says it will also be adding support for Todoist, Bring!, Google Keep, and Any.do in the future.
Have a Smart Display? Then Google Assistant will help you start a sing-along session with your family as long as you have Google Play Music subscription. You can now find and learn lyrics and sing together. Just say, “Hey Google, play ‘Jingle Bell Rock’ on Google Play Music”. This is available starting today with select songs.
The next one is reading aloud, including titles like “Mickey’s Christmas Carol”. This is from Google Play Books, and Google is adding four new titles over the coming weeks: “The Lion King”, “Mulan”, “Frozen”, and “Aladdin”. The service includes over 50 titles, with more on the way. That includes titles from Nickelodeon “Albert: The Little Tree With Big Dreams”, and Dora the Explorer’s, “The Little Christmas Tree”.
You’ll be able to call Santa, too, just by saying, “Hey Google, Call Santa”. This is part of a musical concert, apparently, so you’ll have to help the big guy rehearse his song.
Here are the major bullet points for new additions to smart displays:
- Broadcast Replies: When you’re out grabbing groceries to prepare for your holiday feast, the Google Assistant can help you easily connect with family at home by using broadcast to check if anything else needs to be picked up. Starting next week, you can also reply back from a smart speaker or Smart Display to your phone or other Home devices.
- Sharing photos: Google Photos is another feature on Smart Displays that can show you past holiday memories with family and friends. Now, we’re making it easier to share photos with people on your contact list when you land on a photo that you like by saying “Hey Google, share this photo with April.” You can also quickly hide a photo from your ambient screen or favorite a photo to be enjoyed again at a later time.
- Touch Alarms in Quick Settings: We added a quick way to set an alarm on your Smart Display — just swipe up from the home screen and tap the new timer button.
Which of these new features are you looking forward to?