Apps for the Google Assistant: new languages, devices and features!

OCT 04, 2017
Posted by Brad Abrams, Product Manager

As you may have seen, it's a big day for the Google Assistant with new features, new devices and new languages coming soon. But it's also a big day for developers like you, as Actions on Google is also coming to new devices and new languages, and getting better for building and sharing apps.

Say hallo, bonjour and kon'nichiwa to apps for the Google Assistant

Actions on Google is already available in English in the US, UK and Australia and today, we're adding new languages to the mix—German (de-DE), French (fr-FR), Japanese (ja-JP), Korean (kr-KR), and both French and English in Canada (en-CA, fr-CA). Starting this week, you can build apps for the Google Assistant in these new languages and soon, they'll be available via the Assistant! Users will soon be able to talk to apps like Zalando, Namatata and Drop the Puck, with more apps on the way. We can't wait to see what you build!

Apps are now available on new devices

Along with the new Pixelbook come apps for the Assistant. As soon as the Pixelbook hits shelves later this year, your apps will just work, with no extra steps from you! With that said, as with every new surface, especially one with a screen, it's good to make sure that your app is in tip top shape, including using high quality images or adding images to make your conversations more visual.

With apps on Pixelbook, you'll be able to reach a whole new audience and give users the chance to explore your app on a bigger screen, while they get things done throughout their day.

And, in case you missed it, we also recently introduced apps on headphones optimized for the Google Assistant and with the Assistant on Android TV.

Building Apps for Families

Today we shared how the Assistant is great for families—giving people the chance to connect, explore, learn and have fun with the Assistant. And from trivia to storytelling, you can now build Apps for Families and get a dedicated badge via the Assistant on your phone, letting people know your app is family friendly! Soon, users will be able to say "Ok Google, what's my Justice League superhero?" or "Ok Google, play Sports Illustrated Kids Trivia" if you're looking for a game. Or 'Ok Google, let's learn" for some educational fun.

To participate, you first need to make sure your app complies with the program policies and, after that, simply submit it for review. Once approved it will be live for anyone to try! You can learn more about that here. Apps for Families will only be available in US English at the start.

Apps made easy with templates and more

It's easier than ever to make your first (or fifth!) app. With new templates, you can create your own trivia game, flash card app or personality quiz for the Google Assistant without writing code or doing any complex server configurations. All you have to do is add some questions and answers via a Google Sheet. Within minutes, voilà, you can try it out on your Google Assistant and publish it! And if you want to try one today, just say "Ok Google, Play Planet Quiz"

We even provide pre-defined personalities when you create an app from the templates, offering a voice, tone and natural conversational feel for your app's users, without any additional work on your end.

If you prefer to code your own apps, we put a fresh coat of paint on our Actions Console UI to make it easier to create apps with tools like API.AI.

Transactions with the Assistant on phones

In May we announced that you could start building transactional apps for the Google Assistant on phones and starting this week in the US, you can submit your apps for review! To get a first look at how transactions will work, you'll soon be able to try out 1-800-Flowers, Applebee's, Panera and Ticketmaster.

Ready to give it a try for yourself? You can build and test transactional apps that include payments, status updates and follow-on actions here.

In addition to paying, with transactional apps, a user can see their order history, get status updates and more.

Community Program: Benefits for great apps

And, last up, to support your efforts in building apps for the Google Assistant and celebrate your accomplishments, we created a new developer community program. Starting with up to $200 in monthly Google Cloud credit and an Assistant t-shirt when you publish your first app, the perks and opportunities available to you will grow as you hit milestone after milestone including your chance to earn a Google Home. And if you've already created an app, don't fret! Your perks are on the way!

Thanks for everything you do to make the Assistant more helpful, fun and interactive! It's been an exciting 10 months to see the platform expand to new languages and devices and to see what you've all created.