Fans of ‘The Voice’ Can Now Vote For Their Favorites Using Google Nest Audio Smart Speakers
Fans of NBC’s “The Voice” singing competition show can now let the judges know who their favorite performers are using the Google Nest smart speaker, skipping the need to make a call or visit the website. The voting option is part of a set of new integrations between “The Voice” and Google to promote the tech giant’s voice assistant and the TV show. The new features also help boost awareness and interest in YouTube Music, which Google wants to make sure people are using as it completes the replacement of Google Play.
“Google is teaming up with “The Voice” to help you explore and find new music—with the new Nest Audio playing a big role this season to help fans and Artists discover and control music using Google Assistant and YouTube Music,” Google explained in a blog post. “And for fans of “The Voice,” voting is getting a little easier. For the first time ever, you can use your voice to vote for your favorite artists. Starting Nov. 24, you’ll be able to say, “Hey Google, vote for The Voice” across Assistant-enabled devices like smart speakers and Android and iOS phones. You’ll even have a chance to set a reminder so you don’t forget to vote during the next episode.”
This isn’t the first time smart speakers have served as voting machines for people’s favorites. The NBA All-Star Game lineup and MTV Movie Awards, and other events with public input have had Alexa skills, Google Actions, or both for some time. This is a first when it comes to the kind of live voting for TV show as it happens, however. Hence, the need to offer a reminder so people can know when it’s time for them to vote on who they want to stay on the show. In addition to voting for contestants, Google has arranged with “The Voice” to bring the show’s official playlists to YouTube Music via Nest Audio or other devices with Google Assistant. Listeners can hear the performances again as soon as a week after each episode.
The Nest Audio smart speaker debuted as part one of several new pieces of equipment this fall at Google’s hardware event. The event focused heavily on the Nest Audio’s sonic qualities. As noted at the time, it appears to be built more like a speaker that integrates Google Assistant, instead of a Google Assistant device with a good speaker. Discussing the 19mm tweeter and 75mm mid-woofer with Mark Ronson and Selena Gomez took up more than half of the presentation’s length. Simultaneously, Google is pushing YouTube Music’s streaming service, hoping Google Play users will switch to the new platform smoothly. The platform has been extending its capabilities, adding playlist creation on Android and Google Assistant and otherwise trying to make using YouTube Music as intuitive as possible.
Connecting that aspect of the smart speaker to YouTube Music and “The Voice” makes perfect sense. It would also explain why Google took the opportunity of announcing the partnership to also announce more exclusive songs for YouTube Music on the new Nest Audio Sessions album, recorded by nine female artists from several countries who laid down the new tracks from home studios. Goog is also promoting a three-month free trial of YouTube Music Premium as part of a trial of the YouTube Premium package for people to get those exclusive songs. Google just has to hope people will hit the button and turn their chair for Nest Audio as quickly as Christina Aguilera does for her favorite contestants on “The Voice.”