The search giant Google is about to make major tweaks in how people search things via voice on its Android platform. The company is reportedly in the process of replacing voice search on Android devices with Google Assistant. According to a report from 9to5Google, the old voice search icon has been replaced with an Assistant icon in the Google app and search bar widget.
Additionally, the search bar widget now invites users to “Ask your Assistant”, when previously it had the message “Say – Hey Google”. When triggered, voice queries are performed by Assistant and results open in a slide-up panel. It appears this change hasn’t been rolled out to all Android users but 9to5Googlehas confirmed that the feature has been rolled out to some of the users.
This change essentially means that Google shifting the focus from regular voice search to Assistant is an indication of where Google wants to guide the future of its services.
Moreover, this change could potentially impact a small percentage of organic search traffic to publishers, given the Assistant’s penchant for providing direct answers. When users are given the answers they need from Google Assistant, they don’t have to search and click through to publishers’ sites.
It must be kept in mind that the Assistant can’t provide a direct answer for every query. Again, this change only has the potential to impact whichever percentage of searches are conducted using voice search on Android. However, it’s impossible to know exactly how large or small that percentage is because Google doesn’t provide voice search data.
Though voice commands are a convenient and efficient way to perform tasks on Android device, Google and other assistants should also focus on striking a balance between privacy and providing features. In this regard, after the company’s recent update it might loosen up on lock screen restrictions in the near future. The staged roll-out of Google Assistant Beta app (version 10.28) is sending a text directly from the lock screen as part of Google’s A/B test.
Meanwhile, Google Assistant also enables us to utilize all manner of hacks and tricks with its feature-rich functionality in order to accomplish our daily goals.
Glisten Pakistan Editorial