Given the ease of use, smart speakers have increasingly become another toy for children to interact with. Many devices include family friendly functionality, with Google Home’s story feature being a particularly useful one. Google is now bringing storytelling to Assistant for Android and iOS.

Ahead of National Tell a Story Day this Saturday, the “Hey Google, tell me a story” command now works on Assistant for Android and iOS. In the past, that command on mobile would just invoke a generic one or two line story read by Assistant.

On Google Home, it launches Play Books with a story catered towards children selected at random. This includes 10 minute tales from Disney or other classics. Instead of just using Assistant text-to-speech, there is an actual voice actor and often audio effects.

Whether you’re on the way to school drop-off or waiting for soccer practice to start, you can hear stories like Let’s Be Firefighters! (Blaze and the Monster Machines), Robot Rampage (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) and more. To get started, just say, “Hey Google, tell me a story.” If you’re trying to get the kids ready for bed after a long day, try, “Hey Google, tell me a bedtime story.”

A similar experience is now accessible on phones through Assistant for Android, as well as the corresponding app on iOS starting today. Play Books for Android or iOS also has to be installed. “Hey Google, tell me a bedtime story” works for night-themed narratives, with this feature available in English in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, and India.

Storytelling is still a better experience on Smart Displays and speakers with features like Read Along. When reading select books, Google Home will listen to track your position and provide accompanying effects. However, the mobile nature today should help parents on-the-go.

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Abner Li

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