Google Home can already do a lot of things, but one of the most anticipated upcoming features is the ability to make hands-free phone calls with the smart speaker. Google announced this functionality back at I/O in June, and it’s now officially going live for all users.
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As Google announced at I/O, hands-free calling on Google Home works just like you’d expect. You simply say “Ok, Google”, and then tell it to call whoever you’d like. When making a call from Google Home, the person you’re calling will currently see it show up as “No Caller ID” or “Unknown.” Google says that it’s planning on allowing users to have their phone number displayed at some point before 2017 is over, but we don’t have an exact date aside from that.
Also worth noting is that Google Home can only make calls to businesses and people who are in your Google Contacts. While this should be fine for most people, it does mean that you won’t be able to call a random number that isn’t a registered business or already a contact of yours.
Google is slowly rolling our hands-free calling on Google Home, and one user on Reddit already captured a video to show just how the feature works.
In the video, Redditor andybaseclef asks his Google Home to make a call to the Alamo Drafthouse movie theater. Google responds by saying “Calling Alamo Drafthouse”, and the LED lights on the top light up with a subtle animation to mimic the ringing you’d typically here when making a call on your phone, and when the call is answered, they pulse even brighter to show that the person on the other end picked up.
After receiving Alamo Drathouse’s pre-recorded greeting message, andybaseclef says “Ok, Google, hang up”, and the call is stopped. It appears to be an incredibly simple process, and thats exactly what we were hoping for. Making a call on Google Home should be more convenient than picking up your phone to do so, and it appears that Google’s managed to do just that.
Hands-free calling on Google Home will be available to customers in the United States and Canada, but there’s currently no word as to whether or not other countries will have access to it at a later date.