Google Assistant’s new features make it more useful for travelers

Ruben Fields
January 9, 2019

The update makes the company's speakers more useful than ever, and we're happy they can finally fit in with our Assistant-enabled smart homes. So for those that don't have Android Auto in their cars, but want a slightly better solution than just talking to your phone, Anker's $50 (£39; United Kingdom pricing and availability TBA) Roav Bolt and JBL's similarly priced Link Drive Plug let you connect your phone to your vehicle via an aux jack or Bluetooth so you can use their built-in noise cancelling mics to talk to the Google Assistant with increased clarity.

Not only that, but the integration means you will also be able to respond to texts using your voice, complete with "auto-punctuation", and control your music. Many of us at DGiT Media love using Google Assistant, and without proper support from Google, the speakers didn't fit properly into our lifestyle. Here are the most notable changes that'll help you in your daily interaction with Google Assistant.

The feature would be introduced to more devices and even smartphones in the future.

Interestingly, the company also said that "earlier speaker models" will be updated to "work" with the Assistant, so owners of, say, the Play:1, Play:5, Playbase or Playbar could be in luck. To start the mode, you can say "Hey Google, be my French interpreter", and when your conversation partner speaks in French, the Assistant device will translate in real-time, either in spoken word or via written translation on a Smart Display.

The search giant notes that the Interpreter Mode is rolling out to the compatible devices over the next few weeks and will support a total of 27 languages.

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Kitchen Aid has launched their own smart display that offers a more discreet footprint than those from makers such as JBl and Lenovo.

Anker today announced a new addition to its Roav lineup of in-car tech - the Roav Bolt. You can then say "Hey Google, check in to my flight", and Assistant will check in for you.

In a related move, Google Assistant will also be able to book hotel rooms for you.

This is not all, Assistant can now also book hotels for you. At the moment, this will only be available for domestic flights in the US operated by United Airlines.

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