“Hey Siri, OK Google”

Posted on November 21, 2018 by Paul Thurrott in Cloud, Google, iOS, Smart Home with 30 Comments

Well, this is insidious: Google has figured out a way to subvert Siri so that you can use it to summon Google Assistant on the iPhone instead.

“We added support for Siri Shortcuts to make it even easier to access your Assistant,” the Google Assistant product page on Apple’s iOS-based App Store notes.

Google’s hack is a brilliant as it is ponderous: Those who wish to use the best digital personal assistant on their iPhones had been forced to manually run the Google Assistant app because Apple locks down the default assistant app on its platforms. But now, thanks to a new feature in the latest iOS version, users can create a Siri shortcut that will help them launch Google Assistant using their voice … from Siri.

(OK, Siri Shortcuts is really a standalone app. But it requires iOS 12.)

If you think this sounds similar to the Cortana and Amazon Alexa integration, you’re correct. But there is one big difference here. Where Microsoft and Amazon partnered on that integration, Apple has worked to keep Google out of its precious iPhones as much as possible. And I’m surprised it allows this little workaround, no matter how ponderous it is.

That said, you don’t have to say, “Hey Siri, OK Google.” That’s just a sample shortcut that various tech blogs have come up with. You could instead use something shorter and easier to say as well. You could also use Siri Shorcuts to run Google Assistant routines, which are like multi-command scripts. Now that would be smart.


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