With the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro, Google is following up last year’s “Hold for Me” with new “Direct My Call” and “Wait Times” capabilities in the Phone dialer app.
Google likes to innovate on the legacy audio calling experience with every Pixel. This year, it wants to tackle how most customer service calls first involve interacting with automated phone trees that have a slew of menu options to wait through and remember.
When dialing a toll-free business number, Google will now transcribe the phone tree, as well the automated prompts, in real-time and display options as text buttons. Powered by Duplex technology, this automatically starts after the call connects.
“Direct My Call” lets you tap instead of having to interact with a dial pad, though common actions (asterisk, pound) and 0-9 are displayed as a carousel at the bottom of the screen.
“Hold for Me” can be launched at any time, while there’s quick access to the Keypad, Speaker, Mute, and end at the bottom of the screen. Google says “Direct My Call” is English only in the US.
Meanwhile, Google will note current and projected Wait Times when you type a toll-free number. The view is quite similar to physical times in Google Maps with users able to browse and see when the best time to call is.
The dialing screen also notes how long you should expect to wait in the green “Call” button, while there’s a button for business “Chat” (like in Maps and Search) at the left when supported. These capabilities are debuting with the Pixel 6 app, but should also come to older devices with the latest version of the Google Phone app.
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