Google to Scrap Google Assistant’s 17 Features, It Deems Inefficient 

Several “underutilised” Google Assistant features, such as the ability to send emails, videos, or audio messages using your voice, may soon be added to Google’s notorious list of redundant features. This coincides with the search engine behemoth releasing updates that it claims would simplify the feature’s operation. Additionally, the business is altering the functionality of the microphone in the Pixel Search bar and Google app.

According to the Verge, starting on January 26th, users who utilise any of the 17 assistant functions that are being scrapped will receive a notification that they are being discontinued. The majority of the capabilities will permanently disappear on February 26th. This revelation was released less than a day after Google revealed it was letting go of about a thousand workers, some of whom were involved in the development of Google Assistant.

Mobile, wristwatches, and smart speaker/display devices will all be impacted by the removal of the Assistant functions; however, Google does provide solutions to restore some of the functionality. Some aspects, like the integration of the Calm meditation service, are being eliminated, though. Many of the functions that have been deleted are not exactly equivalent to the alternatives that consumers are referred to.

Here’s the Full List of Features Google is Doing Away With and Some of their Workarounds

  • Playing and controlling audiobooks on Google Play Books with your voice. Audiobooks can still be cast from a mobile device.
  • Using or setting radio, music, or media alarms on gadgets that support Google Assistant is no longer available, but you can use a conventional alarm or design a custom routine with equivalent functionality.
  • You can manage and access your cookbook, synchronise recipes across multiple devices, view step-by-step instructions, and even create recipe videos. These features are no longer available, but you can search for recipes on YouTube and the internet using Google Assistant.
  • Managing a stopwatch on smart displays and speakers is gone, but alarms and timers can still be set.
  • Making phone calls or sending messages to your Google Family Group with your voice are gone, but broadcasting to devices within your home is still possible.
  • Sending audio, video, or email communication by speaking is gone, but text messaging and phone calls are still available.
  • Rescheduling an event in Google Calendar with your voice is gone. However, it’s still possible to plan a fresh event by hand.
  • You can utilise the App Launcher feature in Google Assistant’s driving mode on Google Maps to effortlessly manage message reading and sending, initiate calls, and take control of media. Google Maps still supports voice control in the same manner.
  • Requesting to hear or schedule Family Bell announcements that have already been scheduled is gone, but it is possible to design a custom routine with comparable functionality.
  • Asking to meditate with Calm is no longer available, but you can still inquire about meditation choices from media companies like YouTube.
  • Fitbit Sense and Versa 3 devices will no longer support voice control for activities. It will be necessary for you to start, stop, pause, and restart activities using the buttons on your smartphone. On Pixel Watches, voice control functionality is still available.
  • Only Google Smart Displays will be able to view your sleep summaries. On third-party smart clocks, you are still able to ask for sleep details with your voice.
  • Unless you’re utilising Duo, calls placed from speakers and smart displays won’t display a caller ID.
  • On smart displays, you may see the current “Commute to Work” time estimations. Voice directions and commuting times are still available.
  • Checking personal trip itineraries by voice. Requests for flight status are still valid.
  • Asking for information about your contacts is gone, but contacts can still be reached by phone.
  • Asking to conduct particular tasks by speech, such as transferring money, booking a reservation, or posting to social media. You can still ask the assistant to launch the apps you have installed.

Additional modifications are being made to the Google app. For instance, tapping the microphone icon will now result in search responses. The microphone in the search bar will no longer be available for users to use to perform tasks like turning on lights, for example. Pixel devices will also be affected because Voice Search will now start when the microphone in the Pixel Search bar is touched instead of Assistant.


I have to admit that I’ve never actually used many of the features I listed. It’s quite fascinating that most of the things Google is getting rid of are things most of us didn’t even know were possible with Google Assistant, let alone actually used. It’s almost tempting to start using them before they’re all gone.

Yet, my speculative nature compels me to ponder what Google has been covertly developing, as I am certain that this is not merely a redundant move by Google. They have something under their sleeve that they plan on using to replace the features they have lost. And I can’t help but think that it has something to do with their new AI project, Gemini. I’m convinced that many of the capabilities and functions currently performed by “Assistant” will be taken over by the mobile version of Google’s AI project, Gemini.   


Simplifying the capabilities of the Google Assistant platform in the long run can make it more user-friendly and less overwhelming. However, it may also cause some inconvenience to users who rely on these functions and have integrated them into their daily lives. More details regarding the updates are available on the Google Assistant help page.

News Sources: Google Assistant Help Page and The Verge.

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Oladipo Lawson

Oladipo is an economics graduate with multifaceted interests. He's a seasoned tech writer and gamer and a passionate Arsenal F.C. fan. Beyond these, Dipo is a culinary adventurer, trend-setting stylist, data science hobbyist, and an energised traveller, embodying intellectual versatility and mastery of many fields.

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