The Google Assistant received a significant amount of airtime at this year’s Google I/O event. Among other things, Google announced a new keyboard feature for Google Assistant. However, one of the other announcements from Google I/O was the introduction of an App Directory. The general idea behind the App Directory is to have a place where you can find apps, as well as general commands that work with the Google Assistant. So whether you are looking for a specific app that can make better use of the Assistant (like Google Play Music or Google Calendar, for example), or know exactly what command will initiate a task (like calling a friend), the app directory is the place to find out that information. In fact, along with cards (which describe each app’s compatibility or the best wording to initiate a command), each card will also take you through to an option where you can try the feature out. The Google Assistant will essentially perform the action for you, for the first time. In addition, the app directory is also a centralized location which stores all of your already-in-use commands. So any tasks you have set up with Google Assistant, will also show up here.
And conveniently, it is all built right into Google Assistant. More interestingly, you can try it out right now if you like. To start using the Google Assistant App Directory, there are two methods. If you already have received the update which seems to be rolling out and adding keyboard functionality to Google Assistant, then the chances are that you will also have this feature live as well. If you have yet to get that update, but do have the Google Assistant installed and set up on your device, then adding the new App Directory is as simply as joining the beta. Head over to the Google app Play Store listing (link below) on your Google Assistant-enabled device and scroll down to where it offers the option to join the beta. Click to join and once joined, head to the Play Store front page, access the menu, click on ‘My apps & games’, click on the ‘Beta’ tab, and make sure the beta version of the Google app is up to date.
When it is updated, fire up the Google Assistant and you will notice a new blue icon that appears in the top right corner of the Google Assistant pane. The blue icon is the gateway to the App Directory. Once you click on it, you will be taken through to the new Google Assistant pages and everything Google-Assistant related.