Google Assistant arrived on the iPhone last year, allowing users to perform several functions using voice commands, like ordering food, controlling smart home devices and more. However, iPhone users didn’t have the ability to trigger Google Assistant directly, until now.
Use Siri Shortcuts to summon Google Assistant on iPhone
Google Assistant has been a welcome addition to the iPhone, allowing users to leverage Google’s vast knowledge when it comes to answering questions. The only issue was the extra effort required to launch the app. Instead of just saying, “Hey Google,” like on Android devices, iOS users had to launch the app. However, Google has found a new way to overcome this limitation, thanks to Siri Shortcuts, according to The Verge. Apple may never have thought that its feature could be used to give the upper hand to a rival service.
Siri Shortcuts allow users to record custom phrases to perform specific functions or launch apps. For instance, you can create a Siri Shortcut to play your favorite music when you get home.
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Although Google has come up with a smart trick, users still need to ask Siri to wake up Google Assistant, meaning you will have to talk to one just to talk to the other. To trigger Google Assistant on iPhone, instead of just saying “Hey Google,” users will have to say something more complicated: “Hey Siri, OK Google.”
How to create the command
To trigger Google Assistant on iPhone using a voice command, first you need to download the latest version of the Google Assistant app for iOS. Then open Google Assistant on the iPhone and select “add to Siri.” Now tap the record button and say, “OK Google.” That’s it; you can now trigger Google Assistant by saying this phrase: “Hey Siri, OK Google.”
If you want, you can select another phrase instead of the suggested “OK Google.” For instance, you can choose something shorter, or “Hey Google.” If you choose this, the full command will be “Hey Siri, Hey Google.”
You can even link more commands using the iOS Shortcuts app. For instance, if there is a Google Assistant command you often use, like turning on the lights, you can link that command to the phrase. This will automatically trigger the action in Assistant when the command is given to Siri.
This is not the first time digital assistants have come together to improve user experiences. In August 2017, Microsoft and Amazon announced a partnership in which the other company’s assistant would be available on their hardware. For example, users could trigger Alexa via Cortana on Windows 10 desktops.
Google Assistant vs. Siri
Google Assistant is smarter than Siri. It allows users to ask questions and get answers directly. For example, if you ask Google Assistant, “Who invented the telephone?” It will give this answer: “Alexander Graham Bell and Antonio Meucci.” To the same question, Siri will throw up a Wikipedia webpage which includes both names, CNBC notes.
Google Assistant can also control your Chromecast device and play the music you want. It also controls the Google Home speaker and other devices.
Even though Google Assistant is the best when it comes to performance, Apple’s Siri is catching up fast. New data from Loup Ventures suggests Siri is improving. Loup ran a digital assistant “IQ” test last year and this year. The test includes 800 questions from five categories, and the scores are based on if the assistant understood the question and provided a useful answer.
Although Google Assistant won every category except for one, Siri bagged the second spot in all categories. The test evaluated Siri, Google Assistant, Alexa, and Cortana. Compared to last year’s results, Siri witnessed a massive improvement.
In 2017, Siri understood 97% of the questions and answered 66% correctly. This year, it understood 99% of the questions and gave a correct answer for 78% of them. The improvement is impressive, considering that the questions were a bit different from last year.
Google Assistant is the best when it comes to performance, but it is the worst when it comes to privacy. The app needs you to enable “web & app activity.” Enabling it will allow Google to collect your Chrome browsing history, search history, location, credit card purchases and more.