Get Your Google Assistant Just on a phone call



Debarun Acharya

Google Assistant, which currently requires a smartphone, a smart device or a phone powered with something KaiOS, will now be available to Indian phone users through a toll-free number. People will be able to call the number and ask Assistant questions.

At its Google For India event, on Thursday Google announced that the Google Assistant will be available to some feature phone users in India through a toll-free number. The company said that users who have a Vodafone or Idea connection will be able to place a call to 000 800 9191 000 and then talk to Google Assistant in English or Hindi.

Working with a telecom company -- in this case Vodafone-Idea -- Google has simply connected its virtual assistant network with the 2G voice network at the backend so that users can get the real-time information by making a toll-free call. In other words, think of it as a feature that is similar to the SMS-based information services that telecom companies used to run years ago. Users would send an SMS with certain keyword or phrase and in return would get some information. Here, instead of SMS, Google and Vodafone are using voice as a medium of communications.

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