Google technology has been expanding over the past recent years, including the use of smart home technology. Since Google Home is a smart speaker, you would automatically assume that it is supposed to Bluetooth with your smartphone at all times. But there are people who do not have smart devices and maybe received Google Home as a gift. What happens to them?
Does Google Home require a smartphone? Not after the initial setup does Google Home require a smartphone, but you will need Wi-Fi. Only after it has been set up with a particular app will the speaker respond to any voice commands with or without a smartphone.
But there’s nothing to worry about. This just means that if you bought Google Home for a friend or an elder, you will probably have to help them set it up before you leave. And you may also need to be on call in case there are any problems from thereon after.
Also read: Does Google Home have to stay plugged in?
Establishing Google Home
Google Home is a speaker that responds to voice commands and can perform various tasks per request. Things like playing music, setting reminders, scheduling appointments. Google Home also includes home automation features and allows you to control your tv, lights and even thermostat. If you are setting up a Google Home for the first time, here is a quick guide to get you started using your brand-new assistant.
- Google Home does not run on batteries. You will have to plug it in somewhere. Make sure it is somewhere accessible, but also out of the way of in-home traffic, so you, a child or a pet is not able to knock it over or damage it in any way.
- You will need a smartphone the first time. Once Google Home is plugged it, it will turn on after a few minutes and will want to sync with your phone. There is also an app that you will need to download. Make sure you agree to turn your location on and that the Google Home is connected to Wi-Fi.
- Sign into Google on the app. Click devices to open the connection between your phone and Google Home. You will hear a sound coming from the speaker. If you heard the sound then click “I heard the sound” when it pops up on the app.
- Enable the location. Without the location you will not be able to access things like weather and traffic. Google Home will need to know the address of which it is located and also the address of wherever your job is if you would like to know how long it would take to get from your home to work in the morning.
- Take the tutorial, especially if the device is for an elder. Google Home will seem complicated for the technologically-challenged. The tutorial will allow you to see how much capacity of function that Google Home actually has. You will most likely not remember every fine detail of capabilities, but at least you will know how to access basic functions.
- Connect media accounts. If you want to listen to music, make sure you have it linked up with your Google Play, Pandora, Spotify, or whatever music platform you use. You can control your TV through Google Home with Chromecast. You can access Netflix, YouTube, Google Play Movies, and other content partners.
- Include Nest Hub, if you have it. Select the compass icon on the Google Home app and sync your hub. Once the app finds it, click the Setup option. Some numbers will show on both your phone and the hub screen if they match, then click yes.
Personalizing Google Home
Now that Google Home is set up and functional, now it is time to customize the settings to accommodate your personal lifestyle.
- Go to Account Preferences. You can choose which type of news you want Google to show you by default and have Google read it to you. Just say, “Okay, Google, listen to the news.”
- Go to Personal Info. Here you can pick what you would rather have Google call you. It can be your name, a nickname, or any other specific title you wish to use.
- Go to Home Control. You do not need a smartphone to use Google Home, so if you do not have one or any other smart device, then you do not have to worry about this part. But it is still cool to know that Google Home is able to link with over 30,000 smart home appliances. Just be sure that all the devices share the same Wi-Fi.
If you have any smart home device and have synced it with your Google Home, just say, “Okay Google, turn the (room of choice) lights off.” And your lights will turn off in whatever room you chose.
- Ask Google questions. If you ever get confused with what questions that Google Home will respond to, just go to the menu and click “What can you do.” This will provide you with a list of different possible questions.
Other Google Home Functions
Google Home is valuable for many different scenarios. Let us take a look at what else you can use your smart assistant for:
- Routines – Customize Google Home to recognize certain commands that will elicit the same responses each time. Like telling Google that you are getting ready for work and Google responds with telling you how long it will take to get there. Or even when you want to hear the news.
- Broadcasting – Speak to everyone in the house at the same time by connecting all the speakers at once with just one specific phrase that Google will recognize each time.
- Night Mode – Schedule Google’s volume to be set at a particular level at different times of the day.
- Recipes – No more going back and forth to read what the next step is while cooking. Google Home can read it all to you and even go back if you missed a step.
- Storytime – Google Home can read your stories while also incorporating accompanying music and sound effects.
Smart Home Appliances
Google Home can connect to various other appliances in your home as long as they are compatible. Even if you are one of those people that do not want to rely on technology for absolutely everything when you are fully capable of performing certain tasks yourself, there are still some scenarios that Google Home would be able to help you out in.
- Lights – Just walked out of a room and forgot to turn the light off? Just ask Google to turn it off for you.
- Outlets –
- Thermostat – When it is cold, and you are too comfortable under your blanket to get up and check the temperature in the house, Google has got your back.
- Locks – Maybe you went to the door on several occasions to make sure that you locked it, but you still can’t remember if you did. Ask your Google Home to make sure the house is secure.
- Robotic Vacuums – Friends coming over soon, and you still have yet to clean the floor because you need to begin preparing the food? Ask Google Home to run the vacuum.
- Smart Ovens – Maybe you are just getting out of the shower, and you realize how long it is going to take you to get dressed before you are able to reach the kitchen. Tell Google Home to preheat the oven while you are getting dressed.
There are many different ways that Google Home is useful. The range of functions might seem overwhelming for those who are not familiar with this type of technology. If it is overwhelming, I might suggest sticking with the basic functions for now.