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Image Credit: Google
Google announced a number of new things in the keynote presentation on the first day of Google I/O 2017. These announcements ranged from machine learning, neural network, the next version of Android and a different configuration of Android for devices with low specifications. Howver, a sizeable chunk of the presentation and announcements were dedicated to Google Assistant.
Google Assistant, the digital assistant by Google will get a number of capabilities in coming months. We have already covered Google Assistant coming to Apple iPhone but there are a number of other things that need emphasis. These feature additions are important and will see a new form factor of devices to hit the market.
New ways of interaction
Google claimed that about 70 percent of the queries on Google Assistant are done in natural language instead of the keywords based search that is used in search engines. The company details some of the specifics about the new functions in a blog post posted after the event. It is working on new ways of interaction so that users can use multiple ways to enter the search query. The company has added the ability for users to type the search query to increase privacy if you don’t want to speak the query out loud.
It is also adding Google Lens to the assistant which will help the assistant to see the world around the user. You can use your smartphone camera to get information about the environment. Since the assistant already knows your location, it will use machine learning and the comprehensive search data to display information about places around you.
This is not limited to location only. Google Lens allows you to identify a yummy dish or that beautiful flower. This means that the company is taking the power of the neural network to help you identify anything around you and give you information about it in an instant.
Image Credit: Google
The assistant continues to provide relevant actions or suggestions depending on where you are pointing it at. Google Assistant can also translate the words seen in the photo or on a street sign without any need to launch Google Translate. Google will introduce a revamped launcher for Android TV to bring Google Assitant on the home screen for Android TV users.
Last but not the least, the company has opened ‘Actions of Google’ for Android and iPhones. ‘Actions of Google’ will also support transactions. The transactions will support payments, identity, receipts, and account creation. This is particularly interesting as now developers can integrate their services with Google Assistant so that users can order at any restaurant from selecting your order with customizations to the payment, all using Google Assistant without the need to install any other app.
Assistant is expanding to new countries
Google as announced that the Assistant will add support to French, German, Brazilian, Portuguese, and Japanese. Assistant will also support Italian, Spanish, and Korean by the end of the year.
The expansion to new devices
Google assistant is working on bringing Assistant to the two billion active Android devices in the market. The company has plans of bringing the assistant to smartphones, computers, connected IoT devices like Google Home, cars using Google Auto and even wearables.
The company announced a new Google Assistant SDK for developers and device manufacturers to easily integrate Google Assistant into their device. It has not put any limitation on the device type and gave an example of speakers, toys, and others. The company is working with Sony, JBL, Panasonic, LG, Anker, Intel, Qualcomm, and others to help them integrate Google Assistant in their devices.