Google wants to do its part hardware ecosystem so easy to talk to software services. To do so, they have launched several campaigns to clearly identify boxes with a badge to show that a particular accessory or product works better on its own as they do with their Works with Chromebook app. They also created the Works with Google Assistant program to identify which smart home devices could be implemented with the phrase ‘Okay Google’. Doing so allowed them to move away from the ‘Works with Nest’ branding and expand their offerings (eventually). Now, they’re going one step further and changing the branding badge on boxes from ‘Works with Google Assistant’ to ‘Works with Hey Google’.
This new badge is intended to clarify exactly what a customer should expect when purchasing a product marked with it. You can say ‘Hey Google’ to call a Google supporter with it, sure, but it goes deeper than that. For a while now, special tools were capable of what is known as ‘Seamless setup’. Instead of having to leave the Google Home app and complete the configuration process in a third-party app, you’ll be able to go from start to finish within the first one.
The Seamless configuration process allows you to set up compatible devices from start to finish in the Google Home app. When choosing supported devices for Seamless installation, you will not need a bridge or hub or app maker app.
If you think about it, this is great! Google’s efforts to embed this process within their own ecosystem are helping to simplify the smart home, whose nature may be confusing for those unfamiliar or new to it. Because the company needs to partner with smart home product manufacturers to provide a Seamless setting, the list of compatible devices is relatively small at this time. You can, of course, get sewing configuration with all Google Home hardware, because, well, they do.
With Works by ‘Hey Google’, Working with Chromebook, the new Phone Hub interface, and more, Google seems to be catching up with customers wanting to use and set up a simple software experience for their hardware and unparalleled collaboration between the two. Apple has been pretty good at this for years, so it’s a real sight to see Google go the same route in this regard.
With a much more cohesive and political ecosystem over the past few years, many users have expressed concern that Google would also own the ‘walled garden’ approach. in terms of software and hardware that Apple is famous for, but because they target their partners much more and work better with third parties than Apple (historically as a requirement), we hopefully there will be more scrutiny and balance here as they develop the new identity.