Google Assistant is now built into more than 1 billion devices, and increasingly can act as a helpful assistant throughout your workday and business travels, thanks to a number of new features announced Tuesday at CES 2019.
The latest version of Google Assistant is able to interpret languages, provide directions, and check into flights—all initiated with your voice, according to a press release. These new hands-free capabilities not only help drivers keep their eyes off their screens, but also helps professionals stay productive on the go.
SEE: CES 2019 news, photos, videos, and more (TechRepublic on Flipboard)
Available today, Assistant is now integrated with Google Maps for Android and iOS. With your voice, users are able to share an ETA with friends and coworkers, reply to texts, search for other locations along your route, add a new stop, and more, the release said. Additionally, Android users can use Assistant with SMS, WhatsApp, Messenger, Hangouts, Viber, Telegram, and Android Messages.
Assistant can also keep track of when you're traveling, taking note of your flight confirmation number and the address of your hotel, according to the release. Google Assistant will soon be able to check into your flight, and even retrieve and save your boarding pass. The Assistant already notifies you when your flight is ready to be checked into, and you can respond with, "Hey Google, check in to my flight." Google also partnered with Choice Hotels, AccorHotels, InterContinental Hotels Group, Priceline, Expedia, Mirai, and Travelclick, allowing users to book a room using Google Assistant.
The last major announcement was Google Assistant's translation function—a key tool for international business travelers. With Interpreter Mode, which rolls out in the next few weeks on Google Home devices and Smart displays, users can ask Google Assistant to act as an interpreter for dozens of languages, the release noted. Just say "Hey Google, be my French interpreter," to launch Interpreter Mode and get real-time audible and written (on Smart Displays) translation. The technology could help you navigate to a meeting in a foreign country, book a foreign hotel, or interpret a bus schedule, the release added.
The big takeaways for tech leaders:
- Google Assistant is now integrated with Google Maps, allow users to navigate to work, share an ETA with friends, search for locations along your route, add a new stop, and more—all with their voice. — Google, 2019
- Google Assistant will also be able to check into your flight, save and retrieve your boarding pass, and act as a language interpreter. — Google, 2019
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- Internet of Things and smart cities: More must-read coverage (TechRepublic on Flipboard)
Macy Bayern has nothing to disclose. She does not hold investments in the technology companies she covers.
Macy Bayern is an Associate Staff Writer for TechRepublic. A recent graduate from the University of Texas at Austin's Liberal Arts Honors Program, Macy covers tech news and trends.