The Google Assistant powered home is getting a nice automation boost thanks to the rollout of Routines for devices controlled by Google's voice assistant.
It's starting pretty small - six basic Routines are rolling out in the US only "in the next few days" to anyone with a Google Home or third party Assistant device. If you live elsewhere, Google suggests you set up the My Day daily briefing for now.
So what's a Routine? It's a set of multi-step actions triggered by one command - they're called Scenes in Apple HomeKit, Applets in IFTTT etc. You say one command and multiple things happen.
With Google Assistant, you can also set up different, customised Routines for each individual in the household, once you've sorted out Voice Match for your devices to recognise you and provide your personal info.
Here are the six starter Routine. To set them up go to the Google Home or Google Assistant app on your phone under Home Control, Music and Shortcuts:
Hey Google, good morning
This is essentially My Day retooled. You can tweak this to trigger the assistant to: tell you the day's weather, commute time, calendar and reminders; turn your Android phone off silent; adjust smart home devices to predefined 'morning' settings and then play music/radio/news/a podcast or audiobook from where you left off.
Hey Google, it's bedtime
Similar to the Good Morning routine, Assistant will: set an alarm; adjust the lights and temperature via connected devices; adjust media volume (e.g. music/TV); tell you tomorrow's weather and first Calendar event and then play music/sleep sounds on a sleep timer.
Hey Google, I'm leaving
One for when you're leaving the house - you can set Assistant to automatically adjust smart home devices like smart lights, thermostats, plugs and cameras.
Hey Google, I'm home
A bit more to this one than Leaving Home. It will adjust smart home devices as before but you can also set this one up to broadcast to all the Google Homes in the house that you've arrived; get location based reminders that you set for 'home' and again play music/radio/news/podcasts/audiobooks specified for this Routine.
Hey Google, let's go to work
These next two Routines only work on Google Assistant on Android phones and iPhones, not Google Assistant smart speakers, TVs or devices. This is essentially the Good Morning Routine with all the same features, minus taking your phone off silent.
Hey Google, let's go home
Much of the same - you'll need your Android or iPhone again. You can set this one up to play music/radio/news/podcasts/audiobooks but there's also a few extras for homebound commutes. You can set Assistant up to read you your unread texts; send texts; get commute info, broadcast to Google speakers at home that you're on your way back and adjust smart home devices ready for when you return. Nifty.
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