The ideal smart assistant is smart enough to know what you need even before you ask. Right now, most of the related technologies lean on the reactive side, requiring users to ask what they have planned for the day, rather than offering information when it matters the most. This is the situation that Google is trying to find out the new ambient mode of Android for Assistant, but only if you are lucky enough to get the new feature.
To be fair, a smart assistant who annoys you about your next appointment after 6 consecutive hours is actually no smarter than you need to ask explicitly. Android developers know that they have to strike a balance between annoying the user with information and presenting the information at some idle time. And when your phone is charging, what better idle time to bring appointments and controls.
Announced back at IFA 2019, Google Assistant’s ambient mode does exactly that when you turn a plug-in tablet and smartphone into a smart display to recharge them. There were reports of a feature rollout of the phone itself last week, although it is not yet clear which phones are eligible and which table the new feature brings.
This is about Google’s new video clip, which details the justification for Android Ambient mode. In short, it presents an active Google Assistant that shows you your agenda for the day as well as shortcuts to set alarms or control smart devices. And when nothing is really to be done, it can show time in very visible capital letters and even show your photos in a slide show.
Unfortunately, Google is still keeping fine details in mind. It is simply saying that Ambient Mode will be available for select phones running Android 8.0 Oreo or higher without listing which phones actually are. Google also promises that this is only the beginning and the ambient mode is simply the foundation upon which a more active assistant will be built.