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Google Assistant has received a new functionality that allows incoming notifications to be read aloud while using wired headphones. This feature will work on all wired headphones, regardless of their USB Type-C or standard 3.5mm connection. On plugging in your wired headphones, you should receive a Google Assistant notification asking you to ‘Talk to your Assistant on headphones.’ Once you give the assistant the required permissions, it will be able to read your messages out loud for you.
Users have been able to activate Google Assistant with their wired and wireless headphones for quite some time but the functionality was limited. Some Bluetooth headphones allowed users to listen to their notifications as the assistant read them out. Now, Google has brought this functionality to all wired headphones. The development was reportedly confirmed to 9to5Google earlier this month that the feature is available for all wired headphones.
When you connect your wired headphones to your phone via the USB Type-C port or 3.5mm headphone jack, there should be a notification from Google Assistant. Tapping the notification should start the setup process and you will have to ‘Allow your Assistant to read your notification to you.’ After giving the assistant some more permissions, the setup should be complete. You can also go to Devices list in Google Assistant settings and tap on Wired headphones to enable or disable Get help from Google.
9to5Google mentions that holding the action button on the headphones activates the Google Assistant and holding down for two seconds makes the assistant note the time and then “summarize the number of alerts, and then start reading back your latest notifications.” However, we tested this feature and found that with wired headphones connected, enabling the Get help from Google option did not do anything and the Status of the headphones stayed Disconnected. Going back and returning to this menu disabled the Get help from Google option automatically.
Google Assistant now also shows lights in the four signature Google colours when activated. It shows a compact panel that says ‘Hi, how can I help you?’ or gives a search suggestion. The keyboard option is still present on the bottom right.
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