Smart displays

Google has today introduced a slew of new features for Google Assistant-powered smart displays. The most notable change coming to smart displays is the support for multiple accounts, at last. As the name suggests, you can now add multiple Google accounts (work or personal) and get calendar as well as meeting updates on the same device. For example, asking the Google Assistant to join the next meeting will automatically search for the impending event across all Google account calendars and will accordingly start the video call. Of course, your smart display must have a front camera to start a video call. 

The second notable feature coming to Google Assistant-powered smart displays will appeal to folks who live by the digital motto of “dark theme everything.” Yes, dark theme has finally arrived on smart displays. As usual, you can also choose to automatically turn the dark theme on/off depending on the time of the day or ambient lighting. 

Notably, a “Home Control” page has also arrived that will let users control all connected smart home devices from a single hub. But that’s not all. Google has announced a few other helpful tweaks that smart display users will appreciate, some of which are mentioned below:

  • new “Your morning” page that brings details such as reminders for upcoming meetings, weather information, and a collection of the latest news. Similar “Your afternoon” and “Your evening” pages will also keep you updated with fresh information. The latter will also play a range of soothing sounds to help users fall asleep.
  • Google Assistant-driven smart displays are also getting a “Media” page that offers content recommendations across platforms such as YouTube TV, Spotify, and Netflix.
  • To quickly start a video call, a “Communicate” page will also be available on smart displays. There is also a “Discover” section that will introduce users to the capabilities of their smart display. 
  • Another useful feature that is arriving soon is support for automatic picture framing. If you’re moving during a video call, the camera will automatically frame the view to keep you in the center. Google Meet has also received a few UI tweaks as well.
  • A new “sunrise alarm” feature is also coming to smart displays, and it will gradually increase the screen brightness until the alarm goes off. And instead of using the “Hey Google” hotword, users can just yell “stop” to pause the alarm sound.
I’ve been writing about consumer technology for over three years now, having worked with names such as NDTV and Beebom in the past. Aside from covering the latest news, I’ve reviewed my fair share of devices ranging from smartphones and laptops to smart home devices. I also have interviewed tech execs and appeared as a host in YouTube videos talking about the latest and greatest gadgets out there.
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