The Google Assistant has received a new functionality that allows incoming notifications to be read out loud while wearing a wired headset. This feature will work on all wired headphones regardless of their standard 3.5mm or USB Type-C connection. When you connect your wired headset, you should receive a notification from the Google Assistant asking you to “Talk to your Assistant through the headset.” Once you give the assistant the necessary permissions, they will be able to read your messages aloud.
Users have been able to activate the Google Assistant with their wired and wireless headphones for quite some time, but the functionality was limited. Some Bluetooth headsets allowed users to listen to their notifications while the assistant read them. Now, Google has brought this functionality to all wired headphones. The development was reportedly confirmed to 9to5Google earlier this month that the feature is available for all wired headsets.
When you connect your wired headset to your phone via the USB Type-C port or the 3.5mm headphone jack, there should be a notification from the Google Assistant. Tapping the notification will start the setup process and you will have to “Allow the Wizard to read the notification to you”. After giving the wizard a few more permissions, the configuration should be complete. You can also go to the Devices list in the Google Assistant settings and tap on Wired Headphones to enable or disable Get help from Google.
9to5Google mentions that holding down the action button on the earbuds activates the Google Assistant and holding it down for two seconds causes the assistant to note the time and then “summarize the number of alerts and then start reading your latest notifications.” However, we tested this feature and found that with the wired headphones connected, enabling the Get Google Help option did nothing and the headphones’ status remained Offline. Go back and return to this menu disabled the option Get help from Google automatically.
The Google Assistant now also displays lights in Google’s four signature colors when activated. It displays a compact panel that says “Hello, how can I help you?” or give a search suggestion. The keyboard option is still present in the lower right.
Will Apple Silicon Lead to Affordable MacBooks in India? We talked about this on Orbital, our weekly tech podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.