Tuesday, April 21, 2020

New Google Assistant feature turns the entire internet into your personal audio book via Chrome Unboxed

I’ll be the first to tell anyone that I don’t use virtual assistants all the time. I don’t rely on the Google Assistant or Alexa to do simple tasks I can routinely do for myself and it isn’t because I don’t like them or think they don’t work: I simply don’t want to get in the habit of utilizing digital assistants until they get quite a bit more conversational. For things like turning on a smart light, locking a door, or checking the weather, I don’t mind using an assistant. However, because I’m not bent towards leaning on it regularly, I probably don’t get as much out of the Google Assistant as I could.

That may change after today. I’m not kidding. My regular, daily use of the Google Assistant is likely to skyrocket with this new feature that was just rolled out: the ability to read any web page aloud. Whether or not this sounds awesome to you in this moment, just go with me for a second as we unpack what is going on here and why it will likely be incredibly useful for many.

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