Actions on Google: new directory, device availability and smart home controls

JAN 08, 2018
Posted by Brad Abrams, Product Manager

With the Google Assistant and Actions on Google, we're excited for 2018 and look forward to continuing the developer momentum you've helped us build. To start the year off right, we're at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas showcasing the Assistant at home, on the go and in the car—and all the ways it can help in each of those places. You can learn more here. For developers like you, we're building upon those same areas to extend the ways you can reach users in those places, too.

Helping users get more done, together

Today we're introducing a new web directory and an updated directory experience with the Assistant on phones. These directories give users even more visibility into everything your app can help them do. They also make it even easier for users to share links to your apps. And together with your help, we're adding Actions all the time including those that are coming soon from SpotHero and Starbucks.

Even better, when you publish your first app, you'll become eligible for our developer community program, that supports you with up to $200 in monthly Google Cloud credit and an Assistant t-shirt - with the perks and opportunities growing the more you do, including earning a Google Home.

At home, on the go and in the car

With the Assistant, your apps are available across many devices and this year, we're making them even more available with new integrations at home, on the go and in the car.

For the home, we announced that smart displays with the Assistant built in are coming later this year. Smart displays come with the added benefit of a touch screen, they can help provide a visual experience for users.

Beyond smart displays, we also have the Assistant coming to new speakers and TVs with the Assistant built in, as well as new headphones that are optimized for the Assistant.

Finally, starting later this week, we're bringing the Assistant to Android Auto, allowing users to project Android Auto, and with it the Assistant, onto the screen in their compatible car.

The best part is that compatible apps will be available to users on all these devices without additional work. With that said, to ensure the best user experience, here are a few tips:

More control of your home with smart home control

In addition to the enhanced home experience with built in devices, we're also updating our home control experience, making it easier than ever to build for smart homes. The Google Assistant already works with more than 1,500 smart devices from 200+ brands, but this is still just the start for the number of devices we anticipate will be built for the smart home.

We first launched the smart home Actions at I/O this year and we started with support for things like lights, plugs and thermostats. Now, we're excited to announce we've added direct support for a number of new device types, including: cameras, dishwashers, dryers, vacuums and washers. This means that users can control all kinds of appliances in their home just by asking the Google Assistant. And in order to support these new integrations, we're also expanding the supported device traits to include: camerastream, dock, modes, runcycle, scene, start/stop and toggles. With all these new devices, it is a good thing we have made it even easier to build smart home Actions with a streamlined development flow and insightful analytics to help you improve your smart home Action. Ready to begin? Start here!

And that's our news for now. Thanks for everything you do to make the Assistant more helpful, fun and interactive! It's been an exciting year to see the platform expand to new languages and devices and to see what you've all created. We can't wait to see what you build and the new ways users are able to get things done as a result. Here's to a great year!