How the Google Assistant works

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Valery Aloyants
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How Google Assistant works on Android

The operating system on which Google Assistant expresses the best of itself is obviously Android: therefore, if you have a smartphone or tablet equipped with the latter and want to perfectly learn how the virtual assistant works, carefully follow the instructions I am about to give you below.

Google Assistant requirements


activate Google Assistant on Android, make sure that the device you intend to use complies with the minimum requirements that I set out below, which are essential for the proper functioning of the entire system.


  • Operating System: a version of Android 6.0 or higher. You can check the Android version installed on your device by going to the area Settings operating system (the gear icon placed in the drawer) and tapping the item About phone / About or, alternatively, by accessing the section System> About phone / About device.
  • Google app: version 13 or later. To check the version of the Google app on your device, start it and tap the button located at the top left (or, on some devices, at the bottom right), and then select the item Settings. On the next screen, tap on the item Information to trace the information requested. If the version of the app is lower than the one I indicated above, update it through the appropriate section of the Play Store: if you don't know how to update apps on Android, read the thematic guide I made for the purpose.
  • Google Play Services: this component is nothing short of fundamental for the correct functioning of the Google Assistant (and other Google services), therefore its presence on the device in use must be checked. To check that the related apps are installed on your device, open the specific page of the Google Play Store and check that the button is shown on the screen apri: if so, then you don't have to do anything. If, on the other hand, you should see the key Update or il tasto Install, proceed without hesitation with the update or installation of the component. If you need help installing Google Play Services, I suggest you read my dedicated tutorial.
  • RAM: almeno 1,5 GB. It is always best to make sure there is enough RAM to start the assistant, as otherwise the user experience may be bad (or the assistant may not start at all). To check the amount of RAM on your device, go to Settings of Android and tap the voice About phone / About (o System> About phone / About device): scrolling down the proposed panel slightly, you should find the information you are looking for.
  • Display Resolution: almeno 720p. The screen resolution is also very important for the proper functioning of Google's "virtual secretary". Once again, you can get precise information about the parameters of the display in use by accessing the Device information, as I showed you in the previous point.
  • Phone language: The languages ​​currently supported by the Google Assistant are English, French, tedesco, in your languagen, Japanese, Korean, Spanish e Portuguese. If you need to change the Android language, you need to go to Settings > Language and input (or in Settings > Advanced Settings > Language and input) and set the language to cityno (or any other supported language).

Activate the Google Assistant



Do you have a fully compatible Android phone? Then it's time to activate the Google Assistant and make the most of it. To do this, start theGoogle app (l'icona a forma di "G" Coloured placed in the drawer of the device), then presses the button located at the top left (or bottom right), so you can select the item Settings in the sidebar that is shown on the screen.

Once this is done, press on the voice Settings placed just below the section Google Assistant, move to the tab Assistant, scroll down the page and select the device name in use, then bring the levers related to functions Google Assistant e Log in with Voice Match su ON (the keys will turn blue).

If the function Log in with Voice Match had never been activated before, you should be asked to create a voiceprint to allow the assistant to recognize only commands given via your voice: to proceed, tap the button Start and pronounces the phrase "O“, (Ie the“ main ”command to activate the assistant from any app or device screen). If you want to start the assistant even when the screen is off, be sure to activate the voice Unlock with Voice Match.

Now that you've set up your assistant, call it up by holding down the key Home for a few seconds or saying the phrase “OK Google” while holding the phone nearby.


Please note: on the family's smartphones pixel (those produced by Google itself), the Google Assistant is already active by default. However, I advise you to configure the voiceprint (so as to prevent someone from giving commands in your place) following the procedure I indicated a few minutes ago.


If you are having difficulty setting up the Google Assistant on your phone, I suggest you read my guide on how to activate Google Assistant, where you will also find valid suggestions to solve the most common problems.

How Google Assistant works on iOS

While the Google Assistant is at its best on Android, it may not necessarily be compatible with iPhone e iPad, rather! After installing the dedicated app, it is possible to issue voice commands even on iOS devices, thanks to the partial integration offered with the Apple operating system.

So, to install the dedicated app, start theApp Store of iOS and, using the bar located at the top, search for Google Assistant and tap the button Get corresponding to the first result returned: to proceed with the installation use the Face IDtouch ID or enter the password dell'ID Apple.

Once the installation is complete, start theGoogle Assistant app recalling it from the iOS Home screen, enter your credentials Google account (if you already have other Google apps installed, you will not be asked for anything else and you will be able to log in automatically) and give consent to all permissions required (such as access to notifications and the microphone).


At this point, you can use the voice assistant by starting the Google Assistant app, tapping on the button in the shape of microphone and pronouncing the sentences "OK Google" or "Google Google". It is not possible to call the assistant from the home screen or other apps. With iOS 12 and Siri's custom commands, however, you can also invoke the Google Assistant by saying the command "Hey Siri, OK Google" in Siri, (after unlocking the device screen and activating the appropriate function by recalling it from the home screen of the Google Assistant app).


Common commands to use

Now that you have managed to activate everything, it is time to get into the concrete and understand in practice how Google assistant works, taking a look at the most common (and used) voice commands you can issue through it. Keep in mind that, if you are unable to use your voice, you can "write" commands to Assistant using the icon in the shape of keyboard, located at the bottom of the screen.

  • weather: what's the weather today?
  • Food: find restaurants nearby.
  • Opening time: is the cinema [name] still open?
  • navigator: take me to the nearest gas station.
  • Traffic: how is the traffic on the A1 motorway?
  • reminder: remind me to turn on the oven when I get home.
  • Voli: Is the Alitalia flight [flight code] on time?
  • Sport events: what's the next Juventus match? What is the “Serie A” ranking?
  • Calculations: what is 20% of 167?
  • Dictionary: what does "Gregarious" mean?
  • Translations: How do you say "Nice to meet you" in Spanish?
  • Finanza: how Google's stock is doing.
  • Unit conversions: how many kilometers are a mile?
  • Research: Look for birthday party ideas.
  • Search for images: find photos of beautiful kittens.
  • Answers from the web: how do i repair the toilet drain?
  • Music: play me some rock music.
  • News: let me hear the news in town.
  • Toys: ask me a question of general knowledge.
  • Entertainment: tell me a joke or tell me something interesting.

In addition to the "generic" questions seen above, it is possible to use the Google Assistant to complete precise operations. Here are some examples of commands structured for the purpose.

  • Alarm clocks: set an alarm for 07:00.
  • Reservations: book a table for two at the Venetian restaurant on Friday.
  • SMS: write an SMS to Maria: "See you at 5".
  • Email: send an email to Andrea.
  • Calls: call Simona on speakerphone.
  • WhatsApp: send a WhatsApp message to.
  • Change settings: Turn on Wi-Fi, turn up the volume or turn down the brightness.

For the complete list of voice commands that can be used, I refer you to the official guide on the Google help pages.

How Google Assistant works on Google Home

For your information, a great alternative way to use the Google Assistant is through Google Home, the “intelligent” speaker made by Google, through which it is possible to control both music playback and other Smart devices installed and present on the network by voice. Currently, there are two versions of Google Home commercially available: below I will outline the details of each of them.

  • Google Home (149 €): it is the largest and most expensive model, able to offer excellent audio quality thanks to the 4 speakers located in its lower part. Equipped with a very sensitive microphone and able to receive commands even at a relatively large distance, it has a touch surface (the "head" of the device) that can be used for volume control, music playback and alarm clocks.
  • Google Home Mini (59 €): it has more compact dimensions and is available in different colors (light gray, anthracite gray and coral). The only real difference with the larger model is the quality of the reproduced audio; however, it fully incorporates all its functions, despite the fact that the microphone is less "sensitive" than its older brother (it is necessary to give commands from a short distance to be properly "heard"). It does not have a touch surface like Google Home, but it allows you to lower and increase the volume by touching the right and left sides.

The commands that can be used with these smart speakers are the same as those seen for the apps on smartphones and tablets, with some additions designed for home automation:

  • Luci: Dim the lights in the living room or turn off the lights in the kitchen.
  • Thermostats: Set the temperature to 20 degrees or lower the temperature by 2 degrees.
  • Check TV and speakers: if you have a Chromecast (Google's HDMI dongle that can be connected to the TV), you can play multimedia content using the commands “OK Google, start Narcos on Netflix” or “OK Google, play the latest Fedez video on YouTube“.

For more information on Google's "Smart speaker", I suggest you read my guide on how Google Home works, in which I explained to you in detail how to configure the speaker with your Google account and use it in everyone's life. days.

How the Google Assistant works


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