Google Home Upgrades Automation Options for More Customization
Google has introduced a new version of the Home app to speed up the addition of new devices based on the Matter standard. The new app incorporated more customization tools and ways to adjust the experience, including having a device react to the way another behaves. Coordinating these devices is crucial as Google claims there are 25 connected devices in the average household, a seven-fold increase over the last five years.
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The Matter smart home standard adopted by Google last year is set to launch later this year, with existing devices receiving updates to work with the broader ecosystem of smart home products, including more than 80,000 Works With Google Home devices. As a result, the Google Home app will offer automatic detection and setup for smart home devices. The Fast Pair feature is much speedier than the current manual process. Users will be able to view the devices, their potential actions, and automated service in whatever form they prefer, meaning live camera streams and doors that lock automatically when the app is opened.
Central to the new Google Home app are the expanded options for Routines. There are more choices for how and when smart devices behave based on multiple conditions, including time, temperature, vocal commands, or other interactions with the devices. Along with the existing options of tying routines to certain times or vocal commands for Google Assistant, users can now connect them to the operations of other smart devices. Pressing a doorbell or passing in front of a motion sensor can now be used as the starting command for the routine.
“We’re happy to share that we’re expanding Routines in the Google Home app to give you more control of the things you can automate in your home. With new starters, conditions and actions, you can now easily build and customize home automations that can make your home safer, your life easier, and your day more fun,” Google Home product manager Prafulla Rawal explained in a blog post on the updates. “With these updates you will be able to create home automations that start when your compatible smart devices do something, when you say something to Google Assistant, when it’s a specific time of the day, or at sunrise / sunset.”
The routines are more accessible within the home too. Personal routines have been available already, with visibility limited to their creator, but users can now make Household Routines that anyone on the active Home account can see and edit. And Google has a lot more in store, with plans for more than 100 new features a part of a script editor set to debut next year.
“As we invest into these capabilities of Routines, we understand that many of our advanced users want to create even more powerful and complex home automation,” Rawal wrote. “We are building a home automation script editor, which will offer our advanced users even greater customization with 100+ new features and capabilities based on your unique understanding of your home.”