Assistance from Assistants — Local Businesses Get Ready to Accept Calls from Google Assistant
May 31, 2019 | Contributed by: Shashi Bellamkonda
In May of 2018, Google announced a new voice technology that helps consumers call a business called Google Duplex. I have been an enthusiast of Google devices and an ardent fan of Google Fi (Google’s MVNO — cell phone service) and my Google Pixel phone.
For the past few months callers to my cell phone have been subject to the calls being answered by my Google Assistant. It does a good job, and most of the time spam callers drop off, but my genuine contacts are surprised at the ease of the conversation.
AI i.e Google Assistant making calls is not a far away dream but a reality if you own a Google pixel device. This month, Google rolled out the service to 43 cities where you can use Google Assistant on Google’s Pixel, Pixel 2 or Pixel 3 series phones to make restaurant reservations.
To opt into the program, local businesses will see a new option within their Google My Business profile settings asking them if they will accept calls from Google Assistant. My recommendation is to accept this setting, as I am pretty sure the Google Assistant will do a better job than my calling your business with my thick Southern accent.
This is just another way Google is trying to help people connect quicker with local businesses without any middleware. It’s also very easy. Simply say, “Ok, Google” and you are off to the races to book a table and possibly call your other favorite local businesses.
I anticipate that this assistant feature will roll out to other Google Smart devices like Google Home, Google Smart Display and Google Hub. Let us know if you have opted in to receive calls from AI.
To opt-in to this feature, marketers can go to the info section of a Google My Business profile and check the box in the section “Google Assistant Calls.” Once you do this, try calling the business. Until now we have heard that the top voice query has been, “Call mom.” Will that give way to “Call curry in a hurry?”