Google Assistant is Ending Assignable and Location-Based Reminders
Google Assistant is sunsetting the option to set reminders for other people or to tie reminders to a location, according to an update on the support page for the feature. The Assignables feature has let users set reminders for others based on where they are since its 2019 launch, but both facets appear to be going away at an unspecified date. The date and time element of reminders for oneself appears to still be available, however.
Google created Assignables as a way for users to alert people linked to their accounts about tasks or other information they may have forgotten. The location designation made the reminder pop up both when it is set and when the time or geography matched the request. For instance, someone might set a reminder for a roommate about picking up milk tied to a nearby grocery store or a brief note of encouragement for when a spouse arrives at their office address. It’s the same idea as any reminder a user might set up otherwise, but targeted to people in a Google family group or who have linked their accounts to the same Google Assistant-enabled smart speaker. The support page announcing the discontinuing of the features links to an article suggesting using the more limited Google Assistant Routines location triggers instead.
Google removing two useful features for no apparent reason seems odd on its face. However, the tech giant may simply be clearing the field for a more comprehensive reminders platform. Specifically, this might be the prelude to Memory, a rumored feature that will enable Google Assistant to remember everything from images, audio reminders, direct commands, and more and organize it into a searchable database. Google Assistant will then analyze the raw data and contextualize the collection with appropriate tags and AI-generated reminders. With Memory in place, the Assignable may be redundant, but it might be worth setting a reminder for a few months from now to find out if Google made a mistake.