What is the Google Assistant?


custom-actions-on-google-homeWhen consumers use their Google Home device, they are actually interacting with the Google Assistant. The Google Assistant is the intermediary between the Google Home device and the content users want to access. However, there is more than just Google Home and the Google Assistant. There is an entire ecosystem being built by Google, third-party developers and hardware providers. Third party services are able to create Conversation Actions with the Google Assistant and help engage users through Google Home today. In the future, these will also be accessible through Google’s Pixel smartphone, the Allo mobile app and anywhere else the Google Assistant becomes available. Each Google Assistant-based system has three key components:

  1. Device – Can be any device with a microphone, speaker and connected to the internet. For example, the Google Home pictured here contains two microphones and an integrated high-excursion speaker, enabling it to capture and transmit voice communication and deliver crystal-clear highs and rich bass for Hi-Fi sound.
  2. The Google Assistant – The cloud-based voice assistant service that interprets speech, determines user intent and returns spoken results by converting text to speech in a female voice.
  3. Actions on Google – The brains that deliver something useful to the user. Each action gives Google Assistant additional intelligence so she can help users get what they want. In some ways actions are like mobile apps and in other ways they are more similar to web pages. Actions are what you build to engage consumers and enable the user experience.

Voice UX is Different than Visual UX

One thing you will notice about the Google Home is that there is no screen. The primary Google Action use case is not just voice-first; it is typically voice-only. This requires a different mindset from building apps for mobile devices or web pages where you rely on visual, touch and click interfaces. It also requires a different approach to content discovery using new voice-enabled SEO techniques. Each use case is a voice interactive audio experience which we refer to as Voice UX.

XAPP has developed hundreds of Voice UXs for mobile content discovery and advertising, Alexa Skills and Google Actions. We have also measured performance on millions of voice interactive audio sessions with end users. We know what works and what doesn’t. We also have a detailed process for designing, prototyping, building, managing and monitoring Google Actions.

If you would like assistance designing or developing your Google Action, click the button below to learn more.


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