Virtual assistants come standard with just about every device, but it can be annoying to switch from Alexa to Siri to Bixby and on and on. Sometimes you just want the consistency of a single voice-activated assistant. If Google Assistant is your jam, it’s luckily available on a number of devices. You can even get Google Assistant on iPhone.
So, how do you install Google Assistant on iPhone, and what are the advantages of ditching (or supplementing) Siri? Let’s dive in!
Setting up Google Assistant for iPhone
Your first step is to download Google Assistant for iPhone from the app store. You’ll be asked to log into your Google account (or create a new one) the first time you open the app.
You’ll be prompted to give Google access to your microphone and location early on. Follow through the instructions as they come up until you reach a home screen where you can get started using Google Assistant for iPhone.
If you’re not sure where to start, ask a simple question like, “What can you do?” Google Assistant will fill you in on some of what’s available, like checking the weather, setting a timer, making a phone call, and more.
Once you’ve had time to look around the app and have a few conversations with your new assistant, you’ll be ready to make your life easier with simple voice commands. There’s a blue icon at the top-right corner of the screen, click on it for more suggestions and options.
If you have a question, just click on the multicolored microphone at the bottom of the screen. Or type your question into the app if you prefer.
Better than Siri?
Apple has become well known for its own virtual assistant Siri, and one big question you may be asking yourself is whether it’s worth it to download Google Assistant when you could just stick to Siri.
There’s no short answer, as your choice will largely depend on your own lifestyle and needs. Maybe you already use Google Assistant on other devices and want that consistency of user experience, in which case you’re already sold on Google Assistant for iPhone. Then again, maybe you want the best tool for the job, regardless of branding.
So, how does Google Assistant compare to Siri?
The most obvious drawback of Google Assistant for iPhone is that it’s not baked into your OS like Siri. You can hold your home button to activate Siri, whereas Google Assistant requires that you launch a separate app.
Google Assistant does just about everything you can ask Siri to do. It also adds the option for shortcuts, which you can add to the “My Stuff” tab. That means you can do things like set up trigger phrases. You could, for example, say, “Running late” and have that message automatically sent as a text to a specific contact — your spouse or friend who you’ve grown accustomed to keeping waiting, perhaps?
On the downside, Apple doesn’t go out of its way to let Google Assistant compete with Siri. You can’t set alarms, launch apps, open your camera, post to social networks like Twitter or Facebook, or call a rideshare app like Uber or Lyft. These are all things you can do with Siri.
If you’re a Google fan, you’ll be pleased to see how easy it is to use Google Assistant for iPhone. It has its limitations compared to Siri on the iPhone but also outperforms her in some ways. The good news is, you can also use both, if you like.
Have you tried Google Assistant on iPhone? What did you think? Send us your feedback in the comments below! We’d love to hear from you.