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How to activate Google Assistant

How to activate Google Assistant

Google Assistant, also known as Google Assistant, is a virtual assistant developed by Google, thanks to which you can interact with your device and obtain information of various kinds through voice commands. It differs from other virtual assistants for its extreme flexibility, its advanced functionalities and its ability to sustain real conversations with the user (property developed mainly in the American version of the service).

With Google Assistant, for example, you can find nearby stores, get information about the weather, make calls, send messages to WhatsApp, set up alarms, manage photos, music and videos, get flight information, reserve seats at the restaurant and much more, all with simple voice commands.

The service is completely free, it is also available in Italy – even if with some function less than the US – and is compatible with both Android and iOS (albeit in a much more limited). Would you like to know more? Well, then take five minutes of free time and find out how to activate Google Assistant on your device thanks to the information I’m about to give you: I assure you that it is really a breeze!

Index

  •  How to Activate Google Assistant on Android
  1. Google Assistant requirements
  2. How to Activate  Google Assistant
  3. In case of problems
  4. How to Activate Google Assistant on Android Wear
  • How to Activate Google Assistant on iOS

How to Activate Google Assistant on Android

Android is the natural habitat of the Google Assistant: it is the operating system with which it integrates to the best and where it is possible to make the most of the potential of the service. If you have a smartphone or tablet equipped with the green robot system and you want to know how to activate Google Assistant on the latter, follow the directions below.

Google Assistant requirements

How to activate Google Assistant

How To activate Google Assistant on Android, your smartphone or tablet must meet the following minimum requirements.

  • Android 6.0 or later operating system. You can check the version of Android installed on your device by opening the Settings menu (the gear icon located on the home screen or in the screen with the icons of all the apps installed on the device) and going to Info on the phone.
  • Google 6.13 or later application installed on the device. To check the version of the Google app installed on your device, open it, tap the ≡ button located at the top left (or bottom right) and select the item Settings from the menu that opens. On the next screen, tap the Information tab to find out which version of the Google app you’re using and if this is less than 6.13, proceed to its update via the Play Store (if you need a hand to update apps on Android, read my tutorial dedicated to the topic).
  • Google Play Services component installed on your device. To check if the Google Play Services are installed on the device, open this page of the Play Store and check if there is the Install button or the Open button: in the first case, the Google Play Services are not present and must be installed; in the second case they are already present and therefore there is no need to intervene. If you need a hand to install Google Play Services, see my guide to the topic.
  • RAM of at least 1.5 GB. You can check the amount of RAM installed on your device by opening the Settings menu of Android (the gear icon located on the home screen or in the screen with the icons of all the apps installed on the device) and going to Info on the phone.
  • Display with a resolution of at least 720p. You can check the display resolution of your device by opening the Android Settings menu and going to Info on your phone.
  • Telephone language set to one of the supported languages: English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish or Portuguese. You can change the language of Android by going to the Settings menu> Language and input (or Settings> Advanced settings> Language and input).

How to Activate  Google Assistant

If your device meets the requirements indicated in the previous step of this post, you can move to the point and activate Google Assistant. How? Simple: start the Google app by tapping on its icon in the home screen or in the screen with the list of all the apps installed on the device, presses the ≡ button located at the top left or bottom right and select the item Settings from the screen that opens.

At this point, tap the Settings item for the Google Assistant, select the name of the device you are using (eg Phone) and move the levers related to the Google Assistant and “Ok Google” detection to ON. If the “Ok Google” Detection feature was not yet active, you will need to create a voice tag to allow the Google Assistant to recognize you. Then press the Start button and pronounce the phrase “Ok Google” for three consecutive times. Then you can also set the option to access Google Assistant while the device is locked (ie while the device is with the screen turned off).

If you use a smartphone from the Pixel family (those produced by the same Google), to activate Google Assistant you must press and hold the Home button for a few seconds or you have to say the phrase “Ok Google” and when prompted, choose to activate the Google Assistant.

How to activate Google Assistant

Mission accomplished! Now, regardless of the device in your possession, you should be able to take advantage of the Google Assistant simply by holding the Home key for a few seconds or by saying the phrase “Ok Google“. At the first start you will be offered a brief presentation of the service, which you can skip by pressing the Next button.

You will also be asked if you want to allow the Assistant to use the items displayed on the screen (to show information related to the content displayed on the device display) and if you want to receive emails with more recent suggestions regarding the features of Google Assistant: choose freely according to your preferences, even if I personally suggest you accept the first request and reject the second one.

How to activate Google Assistant

 

To find out what questions you can ask the Google Assistant and what operations you can do through the service, try asking “What can you do?”. Alternatively, consult the official Google documentation with the list of commands supported by Google Assistant or open the Google app, tap the ≡ button and go to Settings first and then click on “What can you do?”.

How to activate Google Assistant

To make a request to Google Assistant, call the Assistant by pressing and holding the Home button on your device or by saying the phrase “Ok Google“. Alternatively, press the microphone icon located at the bottom of the screen or use the on-screen keyboard, tapping on the icon displayed at the bottom left.

If you do not know anything about it, read the official Google Assistant documentation on this page.

In case of problems

How to activate Google Assistant

Although you have followed my instructions, you have not yet managed to activate Google Assistant on your smartphone or your Android tablet? Do not panic: try to put into practice the suggestions you find below, repeat the activation procedure of “How to activate Google Assistant” that I explained to you earlier and you should be able to solve the problem.

  • Enable access to Google’s “Web Activities and Apps”. To do this, open the Google app, tap the ≡ button located at the top left or bottom right and go to Settings first and then to Account and privacy and Google Task Manager. Next, tap on Web & App Activity and move the lever at the top right of the screen to ON.
  • Clear the Google app data. To do this, access the Android settings, go to the App (or Applications), select the Google app, go to Memory> Manage space and presses the button Delete all data.
  • Install a launcher compatible with “Ok Google”, such as Pixel Launcher or Launch Applications Now. To set the launcher as the default, go to the Settings> Android Home menu.

How to Activate Google Assistant on Android Wear

How to activate Google Assistant

If you have a smartwatch equipped with Android Wear 2.0 or later and you have paired a Google Account to it, you can use the “wearable” version of the Google Assistant by setting the clock system to English  and pronouncing the phrase “Ok Google“.

If the voice command is not recognized, swipe from top to bottom on the smartwatch dial, go to Settings> Personalization and enable “Ok Google” detection. More info here.

How to Activate Google Assistant on iOS

Google Assistant is also available on iOS as a separate application: this means that it does not integrate into the system as on Android, but can still be very useful. To install it on your iPhone or your iPad, open the App Store (the “A” icon on the blue background that is in the home screen), presses on the Search tab that is at the bottom and search “Google Assistant” in the appropriate text field.

At this point, locate the Google Assistant application in the search results and proceed to its installation by tapping the Get button. To confirm the operation you may be asked to authenticate by entering the Apple ID password, Touch ID or Face ID. If you do not find “Google Assistant” among the app on the App Store, it means that you have a version of iOS not supported (lower than 9.1) and / or a system set to a language for which the application is not yet available (more info here).

How to activate Google Assistant

When installation is complete, start the Google Assistant app, log in to your Google account (if you already have other “big G” apps installed on your device, you should be automatically recognized) and give your consent to receive the notifications.

Then choose whether to receive email notifications about offers and news related to Google Assistant, presses the Next button and start using the Google Assistant. How? Simply by pressing the microphone icon at the bottom, giving consent for using the iPhone (or iPad) microphone and making your requests verbally.

How to activate Google Assistant

Next, you can call on the Google Assistant by pressing the microphone again, saying the phrases “Ok Google” or “Hey Google” (while the app of Google Assistant is running and in the foreground) or using the on-screen keyboard, which you can call up by tapping on the icon located at the bottom left.

If you want suggestions for what you can do with Google Assistant on iOS and the questions you can answer, ask “What can you do?”

How to activate Google Assistant

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