Your home may be bilingual, but until today your Google Assitant wasn’t. Now, Google is rolling out an update that will let your phone or smart speaker understand and speak two languages at once.
Typically, Google Assistant would default to whichever language you use when setting up your phone or smart speaker. That’s fine for personal devices where only one person will be using it and knows which language to use. For shared devices like Google Home, it makes a little less sense. Now, Google will let you set your Assistant to understand any two of the following languages: English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, or Japanese. The company says more will be coming in the future.
To set up multilingual support, follow these steps:
- Open your Google account settings. You can do this one of two ways:
- From Google Assistant on your phone, tap the Explore icon, tap the three-dot menu icon and choose Settings.
- From the Google Home app, slide out the left-hand menu and tap More Settings.
- Tap Preferences.
- Tap Assistant Languages.
- Underneath your primary language, tap “Add a language.”
- Choose your secondary language.
Once you have your chosen language set, you can activate Assistant like you normally do, by long-pressing the Home button on your phone or saying “Hey, Google” to your smart speaker. Once Google is listening, you can give it commands in either language. Note that Google will also respond in the language you asked in, so if you’re asking a question and want someone else to understand the answer, make sure they speak the language, too.