6 new Google Home features to help you enjoy the holidays

‘Tis the season to be voice assisted!

If you’re striving towards a more festive and polite home, Google has your back.

Just before December rolled in, Google announced a couple of festive skills for their Smart Home Assistant including a gift buying to-do list and a completely fresh feature that encourages you to be more polite to your friendly bot. Google thinks its Assistant can help you survive the holidays, but we believe that it enables much more than just surviving. You’ll enjoy every minute of celebrating Christmas in your Assistant-integrated home.

Here are a few ways your voice assistant can make your holidays merry and smart:

1. Create a Holiday Shopping List anywhere, anytime

Whether it’s late gift shopping or you’re missing out key ingredients for the family dinner, Google has you covered. You can keep track of your gift ideas with notes and lists in your Google Assistant just by voice. Just say “Hey Google, add eggnog to my holiday shopping list.” and it will be stored safely for when you’re at the store.

2. Teach yourself and your kids to be more polite

Pretty Please feature uses Google Assistant's voice recognition to enforce manners only on selected members of your household, for example to teach your kids “the magic word”. It reinforces polite manners in adults as well and rewards you with a nice chime and kind phrases if you use the words “please” or “thank you” when requesting something from Google Assistant. Try it out with the command “Hey Google, please play some holiday music for me."

3. Greet your guests from the couch

Broadcast lets you record messages on your phone, send them to any Google assistant and also answer them—sort of like a two-way intercom you can use to call the kids to the Christmas dinner. You can also connect the Nest Hello video doorbell with your Smart Display to see who’s at the door, greet them via Google Broadcast and let them in.

Christmas background - pine, eucalyptus, berries
Photo by Annie Spratt / Unsplash

4. Let the whole family sing Christmas Carols together

The new feature “Visual Lyrics” turns Google Home Hub into a real karaoke machine. If you have a Google Play Music subscription, you can watch and sing along to “Last Christmas”lyrics as they pop up on the screen or finally learn the lyrics of another Christmas song.

5. Read books to the little ones

To add a little magic to story-time, you can ask your Google Assistant to read along and enjoy sound effects and music. Get in the holiday spirit and curl up with a classic and just say: “Hey Google, let’s read along with Mickey’s Christmas Carol.” You can see the full list of available titles here.

6. Have a word with Santa

Did you know that the Google Assistant is your direct line to the North Pole? We won’t tell you more than, just say “Hey Google, Call Santa” and let the fun unfold. Or make a call on the Smart Display to see the range of fun album covers the bands up in the North Pole have made.

While none of these features alone are mind-blowing, all together they do make Smart Homes more in-tune with our daily activities, festive or not, with the help of Google Assistants.

Want to know more on how to effortlessly connect your Google Assistant to your KNX/Loxone/Gira Smart Home? Check out what kind of integrated world 1Home offers.

Get more information on how to connect your Google Home with a Loxone smart home, Gira smart home or KNX IP Interface.

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