Google Assistant can now understand customized commands for third-party apps

Google Assistant just made a huge play for the Amazon Alexa device market

Google Assistant gets slew of new features, better 3rd party integration

The latest comes ahead of SXSW with Custom Device Actions that allow manufacturers to add custom commands for Assistant-enabled devices.

Google isn't the only company making big strides forward with its voice assistant technology. The developers will be able to add conversation based actions to the assistant.

According this new update, Actions are there for the developers who are developing other third party apps. You can even turn off the screen while the audio keeps playing.

Subscriptions were one of the original features of Google Assistant when it was only available in Allo.

Although the additional functionality could be added via Actions but that requires an extra step for owners every time they want to use it. Aside from that, Google announced that users will soon be able to subscribe to notifications on their phones from their favorite Actions, which will allow them to receive information there are interested in, such as stock price, news alerts, quotes and so on. Esquire and Forbes are a few websites taking advantage of this new ability.

Besides custom commands, Google Assistant also gets better media playback features on smart speakers and Android smartphones. The giant is expanding their voice assistant service to more devices and platforms. For example, if you're into the whole meditation thing, you can ask Google to "Ask the Mindfulness app to help me ease with stress" or "Talk to Calm" and it will play you the guided meditation that you need at the moment.

Google has opened up a "Fun House" in Austin, Texas for South by Southwest where they're presumably showing off all these cool new features, so if you're in the area head over and check them out. For example, if a washer has a specific color cycle, you could activate that cycle simply by asking the Google Assistant. It also means you won't have to use the annoying "Talk to [blank]" command.

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