Google Assistant is getting some new TV muscle, with controls over devices including sound bars, streaming sticks and more — as long as developers grant permission for these features. Google is opening the door to brands who make what it calls smart home entertainment devices — or SHED, for short — allowing them to use Google Assistant as a voice remote.
Google Assistant is also going to be able to select and even change channels, a feature Google calls, appropriately, Channels, reported Android Police.
The announcement comes as Google gets ready for its Global Developer Summit, a virtual event this year given the impact of Covid-19, with presentations starting July 8, 2020.
Google is hosting a smart home developer event on July 8
Previously, Chromecast was controlled by using a smartphone app or speaking to Google Assistant. A new remote may make it easier to click through content — and likely bring up Google's smart assistant too.
The new SHED devices that will be able to integrate Google Assistant voice controls into smart home products include:
At home, these controls will work through a Google home device, like a Nest Mini or Nest Hub Max display, with someone speaking their request aloud — such as pausing the TV. That request moves through the Google device to the Developer Cloud, and then to the entertainment product, whether that's a gaming platform or soundbar, to make the action happen.
We expect to hear more about how this will work — and other features that ay be announced from Google — at the July 8 event, which we will share with you.