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Google Assistant pops up on the Google Play Store

The new Google Play Store listing should allow more smartphones to access Google Assistant, but there are some limits.

Published onOctober 5, 2017

Google Assistant, one of the many, many digital companions available, is now accessible via the Google Play Store for the first time. Unfortunately, it looks like its appearance is nothing more than a glorified shortcut for phones that already have Assistant installed, at least for now.

The listing for the app specifically says that you will not need to access it via on the Google Play Store if you have Google Assistant already installed. If you try to download the app on an Android tablet or Chromebook, or a smartphone that doesn’t have Android Marshmallow, Nougat or Oreo installed, it will politely inform you that it won’t work.

So why place a listing in the Google Play Store for Assistant in the first place? Basically, this seems like a quick way for Google to introduce new features for Assistant without having to update the OS itself.  It’s also possible that this may help with the integration of Assistant in more products sometime in the future.  In any case, its appearance in Google Play is more of a curiosity than a helpful feature, but we will see if that changes in the coming months.

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