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Google's Assistant just got even smarter thanks to IFTTT

We're at 57 "recipes" and counting.
Chris Velazco, @chrisvelazco
October 27, 2016
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Between a chat app, two new smartphones and a new in-home avatar, Google's new Assistant is really getting around. While that slow march toward ubiquity continues, it keeps getting smarter, too -- Android Police points out you can now hook up Google Assistant to dozens of new IFTTT recipes, perfect for when you get tired of playing that emoji movies game. Just know this: you can only set up Assistant-enabled IFTTT recipes if you're using a Pixel phone or the (as yet unreleased) Google Home.

It was only a matter of time, really. Google Assistant hasn't quite reached its full potential yet, but it's already great at interpreting spoken commands. With IFTTT -- which basically acts as the connective tissue between lots of different web-facing services -- Google's Assistant just got a whole lot more useful. Just be sure not to confuse usefulness with novelty, since Amazon's suite of Echo home assistants has played nice with IFTTT for over a year now.

Anyway. There are around 57 Assistant-friendly recipes available right now, ranging from mostly mundane ("OK Google, block some time" creates an hour-long event in Google Calendar) to the surprisingly specific ("OK Google, set oven to Sabbath mode"). We've tested a few already, and can confirm that Assistant's voice recognition chops still work like a charm in these different contexts. Over the past hour, we've sent messages to Slack, added a handful of contacts to our Google accounts and added tasks to Todoist without a hitch. If only we had more smart home stuff around the office, we'd have told Google Assistant "it's party time" -- that puts Philips Hue lightbulbs in a color loop for maximum fun-times.

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