Coachella FI

Coachella Has a Google Assistant App

Creativity Incorporated has published a Google Assistant app for the upcoming Coachella Valley Music and Arts festival which takes place on the weekends of April 13-15 and 20-22 in Indio, California. When you open up the Google Assistant app on Google Home or a mobile device you are greeted by host Valerie Lee and can navigate to four options: “check out a Coachella playlist, get some info, test your Coachella trivia skills, or sign into your Coachella account.”

The information service is not very robust. It was able to access information from the website FAQ content to tell me where a bus would arrive for trip planning and that The Weeknd was playing Friday night, but could not give me a full schedule or tell me anything about ticket availability other than the likelihood that tickets wouldn’t be honored for a number of reasons. The most common situation is to get a lot of prompts asking what you would like to do next with a list of available options and the frequent, “I don’t know the answer to that but check out for more info.” There is integration into schedule information so you can find out when artists are performing. You can also access some Coachella playlists but you must say “on Google Play Music” at the end of your request or you will likely end up in a Pandora playlist.

Events and Voice Assistants

Probably the most useful aspect of the Coachella Assistant app is the link to the Coachella mobile app. After you ask about an artist, Google Assistant offers to add the performance time to your personalized calendar for the event in the Coachella app. You must link you account to execute the action, but it does provide more utility than simply hearing the day an artist will play and then having no way to reconnect with that information later. Interestingly, there is no Alexa skill for Coachella. It is not clear why other than Google Assistant is integrated with the Coachella app. Then again, you presumably could do that with Alexa as well.

The presence of Coachella trivia appears to provide a reason to re-engage with the Assistant app even after the event is over. That is a question right now about voice apps and temporal activities. After the event is past, is there any reason for the voice app to exist? Well, there is always next year for Coachella, but what do you do with the voice app in the intervening months? You can always update your trivia and see if you can maintain some engagement until you have new information about next year’s ticket availability and lineup. This app could use some tuning and would benefit from becoming more conversational, but it likely points to a trend for voice apps extending into the event space.

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