Google today announced it will bring its Actions voice apps and suggested responses to the Google Assistant experience in Wear OS devices like smartwatches. Google Assistant on Wear OS will also be able to provide auditory responses to queries in the coming days.
Actions are third-party voice apps made by developers and businesses with the Actions on Google platform, such as games, kids’ stories, or more practical services like eldercare or a way to find out when your next bus is coming. Actions also include common first-party Google Assistant features like asking for stock or weather updates.
Suggested responses recommend follow-up questions or queries based on your first question.
For example, if you ask about the weather today, the next thing you may see on the face of a smartwatch could be “Weather tomorrow” or “Weather this weekend.” The weather example may be mundane, but when you’re carrying out other queries, suggested responses can be an easy way to burrow deeper into the understanding of a topic.
Suggested responses first made their debut with Google Assistant on the Allo chat app in 2016, and have since been added to the Google Assistant experience on Android smartphones.
Also new for Google Assistant today: The AI assistant can now control 5,000 connected devices from 1,500 manufacturers, and changes were introduced that bring more step-by-step recipe instructions to Google Assistant.
Earlier this week, Google announced the opening of an investment fund to back promising startups in the voice app and digital assistant ecosystem.
The rush of Google Assistant updates and announcements comes days ahead of I/O, Google’s annual developer conference being held May 8-10 at the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, California.