Google Assistant took center-stage at I/O 2018, as the company showed off loads of new features and tweaks. However, most publications glossed over one important story during the event, as Google confirmed Assistant was coming to dozens of countries by the end of the year.
“By the end of this year, the Assistant will support 30 languages and be available in 80 countries,” Google Assistant vice-president of engineering Scott Huffman said on stage during the I/O 2018 keynote. Google didn’t name these countries, but it showed off a map of countries where Assistant will be available by the end of 2018.
So which countries will have Assistant support by the end of the year? We tested our geography skills so you don’t have to.
We compiled the list of countries below based on the map shared by Google during the I/O keynote. The list includes both countries that already have Assistant and countries that will get it by the end of 2018.
Eagle-eyed readers will notice that we listed 72 countries, while Google announced a total of 80. There’s a couple of possible reasons for this disparity. Some countries that will get Assistant are simply too small to be visible on Google’s map — e.g. Luxembourg, Singapore, or Bahrain. There’s also a chance that the map that Google shared is non-final or incomplete.
We’ve reached out to Google for clarification and we’ll update if we hear back.
- Côte d’Ivoire
- Democratic Republic of Congo
- South Africa
- Western Sahara
- New Zealand
- Papua New Guinea
- South Korea
- Czech Republic
- United Kingdom
- Saudi Arabia
- United Arab Emirates
- Costa Rica
- Dominican Republic
- El Salvador
- United States
It’s unclear whether Google is bringing localized support to all of these new markets (i.e. native languages, local news etc). However, Huffman’s comments suggest that a few of these countries will get a certain level of localization as well, such as new languages.
Nevertheless, we’re glad to see Google focus on expansion in an even bigger way. As for Google Home speakers in these new regions? That’s an entirely different challenge altogether…
News of the Google Assistant expansion comes a few months after a leaked slide from a Dutch media conference surfaced on the internet. The slide apparently showed that the Assistant would be available in 52 countries and 17 more languages by the end of the year.
Google Assistant first launched in 2016, landing on the Allo messaging service, Pixel devices, and the Google Home. The virtual assistant has since made its way to third-party speakers, Chromebooks, Wear OS watches, iOS devices, and smart appliances.
Have we missed any countries? Just received Google Assistant in your market? Let us know in the comments below!