Google started allowing Android users to use voice actions like the “OK Google” command for operating a third-party app a few months ago, and now, the Internet firm has expanded its Google Now functionality to a host of messaging apps such as WhatsApp, WeChat, NextPlus, Telegram and Viber.
A natural extension
If one already uses “OK Google” and voice to send emails, Hangouts or text messages, the new addition is just a natural extension of it. Users will have a full control and can choose to divide the task into parts or do it in one go. As of now, the feature is available only in English. But unlike Google’s other features, it is not limited only to U.S. users. Google says it is working to develop more apps and add more languages “in the future.”
If a user wants to send a message via WhatsApp, he or she can say, “OK Google, send a WhatsApp message to Joe.” After the command, the user will be asked for dictate the message. In addition to this, a user can just say, “OK Google, send a Viber message to Josh: let’s do dinner tomorrow night,” Google explained in a blog post.
In order to enjoy this new application, one needs to update both the Google app for Android and his or her messaging apps. The feature will give an error message or a list of search results if either of the two are outdated.
Opening Google app for third-party services
The last time the service was updated was in February when “Now Cards” from 40 new third-party apps were added to the card list. In April, the Internet firm added 70 more partners to the list. Some of the partner apps included news sites like The Guardian and The Economist, language training apps such as Duolingo, and travel sites like Airbnb and TripAdvisor. Some of the other supported apps included Shazam, Runtastic, Pandora and many more.
Google also said the app will now be showing the busiest time of the week at millions of business and places globally. Now users just need to type in a name to see how much of a rush the place gets in a day.