For iPhone owners, there’s not much more frustrating than hollering “Hey Google, find my phone” at your Google Nest smart speaker or smart display, then remembering it’s not going to work. However, that’s about to become a thing of the past, as Google Assistant will soon be able to find iOS devices as well as Android smartphones.
Google Nest smart speakers and Google Nest smart displays can make your phone emit a cheerful tune, even when they’re on silent or Do Not Disturb, so you can find them easily, rather than frantically rooting around your house getting more and more desperate by the second.
The feature, which will be rolled out soon in the US, UK, and Australia, does require a little set-up for it to work. You’ll need to add your mobile number to your Google account, and make sure Voice Match, which can distinguish between different voices speaking to the smart speaker, and personalized results, are turned on. Then you’ll be ready to go.
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Other updates coming to Google Assistant as part of Google’s Spring update include being able to create smart home automations that will trigger automatically at sunrise or sunset, as well as at a specified time, or when a certain phrase is said.
Leading the way
Google Nest smart speakers and smart displays aren’t the only devices that can be used to find both iPhones and Android smartphones, but they are the most efficient.
The ‘Find my Phone’ Alexa skill can be enabled on Amazon Echo speakers and Echo Show smart displays that will make a call to your phone to help you find it more easily. However, as the call is routed over cellular networks, your phone will need service for the feature to work, and if your handset is set to silent, the phone will behave in the same way it normally would - so it can’t be forced to emit a sound.
Alternatively, the IFTTT (If This Then That) platform can also be used to allow Alexa to ring your smartphone, but it's fiddly to set-up. Unfortunately, Siri on HomePod and other iOS devices can only be used to find an iPhone and not an Android device.
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