The Google Assistant comes to Android TV, starting with the Nvidia Shield

Google Assistant turns Nvidia Shield TV into a hands-free smart device

The latest update to the NVIDIA's Shield TV Version 6.0 has added Google Assistant, making the media player a bit more intelligent. You will be delighted to know that Google is offering a free three month trial of YouTube Red to Shield users on the arrival of voice assistant to Android TVs.

If you have a SHIELD TV, you have to accept the system update to be able to use Google Assistant. Besides, apps for Google Assistant will also work on Android TVs.

Following its launch on NVIDIA SHIELD TV in the United States, the next step will be to reach users of Sony Bravia TVs over the next few months. You can also ask your Assistant to "play some music" or listen to a specific song on YouTube Music, Google Play Music, Spotify or Pandora.

You can also take advantage of the NVIDIA Shield TV's huge screen by letting Assistant check your calendar, or display a collection of your Google photos.

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From there, you can ask the AI to play YouTube, Netflix or HBO Now video content by naming what you want to watch, or performing a quick voice search based on a topic or genre.

Of course smart home devices can be controlled by the Google Assistant, even through Android TV. Likewise neither will searching in most apps using Google Assistant as it will not recognize that you are in an app. At present this is probably not quite as useful as a feature as most would hope it to be. Last but not least, the SHIELD remote, SHIELD remote with headphone jack and SHIELD controller have been upgraded to a new firmware.

Voice commands are handled from the remote, which has a microphone built in. So much so that when you are that close to the Controller it is just easier to hit the mic button instead of using "OK Google". Although fun is not quite as effective as just using the controller - not yet anyway.

But as the Shield TV is one of the best set top boxes available right now, it's nice to see that Nvidia is thinking of ways to make it even better.

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