Google Assistant Coming to Android TV

Google is expanding the reach of Google Assistant and it is coming to a television near you.  At CES 2017 yesterday, the company announced that the AI-driven personal assistant would be coming to Android TV and a wide range of other Smart TVs on the market.

In the coming months, the Google Assistant on Android TV will come to the NVIDIA SHIELD, along with all Android TVs in the US running Android 6.0 Marshmallow or Android 7.0 Nougat, such as the AirTV Player, Sharp Aquos, Sony Bravia, Xiaomi Mi Box, and more. And once available, the NVIDIA SHIELD will be the first TV device to offer a hands-free Assistant experience — so “Dim the lights” will only be an “Ok Google” away!

The news means that Google Assistant will start moving beyond Google Home or the Google Pixel phone line up, expanding further into the home as they try to compete with Amazon’s Echo and Alexa technology.

The expansion to Android TV means that you can issue “OK Google” commands to your TV to start watching shows on streaming services.  For example,

Google Home

Google Home

  • Play content: “Play Stranger Things on Netflix.”
  • Discover content: “Search YouTube for Jimmy Kimmel.” And you can also ask a follow-up if you’re interested in more videos by saying: “Play the second one.”
  • Get answers: “Tell me about Jurassic Park?”
  • Set the right mood: “Dim the lights.”
  • Get ready for your day: “How long will it take to get to work?”

The examples provided by Google show that Google Assistant is fully integrated, not just basic television only commands.  The ability to dim the lights, get driving information, etc. means that the Assistant makes your Android TV more-or-less like Google Home.  That’s pretty powerful.

Look for updates to roll out to the various devices that already support Android TV in the coming months.