Google Details New Software Updates Coming to Android and Smart Displays

After hosting an event this past week to announce new upgrades to its hardware lineup, Google is ready to talk more about software. The company published a blog post today in which it discusses multiple new features that will all make their way to existing Android smartphones and Smart Displays

For starters, screen calls will be arriving to Google’s Pixel devices next month. The company unveiled the feature with the Pixel 3 in which it allows users to screen incoming calls to try and avoid scammers and telemarketers. The feature will roll out to Pixel 3 owners this month.

Google says its Duplex technology that will allow the Google Assistant to book reservations at restaurants will also roll out in select cities later this year. There’s also a new visual overview feature for the Assistant on smartphones and the ability to use the Assistant from the lock screen, both of which will roll out soon.

Moving on, Google is also introducing some new features for Smart Displays to make the overall experience of owning one much more pleasurable. For instance, Smart Displays can now be included in multi-room audio, allowing users to add a display to a speaker group to play music to. You’ll also be able to select a Live Album as your Ambient Mode display. And much like Android Pie, Smart Displays are getting their own version of Digital Wellbeing with Downtime that will limit when users can interact with the device. In addition, Nest Hello Doorbell will soon let you peek at who’s knocking at your door right on your Smart Display, while Home View will give you an at-a-glance look at what’s turned on and off inside your home.

Finally, the Google Assistant is being upgraded to control many different media and entertainment devices such as TVs, speakers, smart remotes, and more.

All of these new updates should start rolling out incrementally over the coming weeks and months.