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Google Assistant forgot how to control smart home devices (Updated: Fixed)

Update: Users are reporting that the issue is now resolved.

Published onMarch 2, 2023

On Device Voice Typing by Google Assistant
C. Scott Brown / Android Authority
Google Assistant icon
  • Google Assistant was having trouble with controlling smart home devices.
  • The issue appeared to be happening in the US and other locations.
  • The problem seems to be fixed now.

Update: March 2, 2023 (3:22 AM AT): It appears that the issue has been fixed. 9to5Google and its readers have verified that Google Assistant is once again able to control smart home devices.

Original article: February 28, 2023 (12:33 PM ET): If you tried to use Google Assistant this morning to do something like activate your lights or turn on your TV, you may have noticed something weird. It appears Google Assistant has forgotten how to control smart home devices.

The virtual assistant that can use your voice to control everything from appliances to your robot vacuum is experiencing technical difficulties. Specifically, it appears users are currently unable to get Google Assistant to “understand” prompts related to activating or deactivating a device.

When given a prompt — like saying “Hey Google, turn on the lights” — the software will usually respond and comply with the order given. However, if you give the software an order right now, it will give you a response saying “Sorry, I don’t understand” or “Sorry, I didn’t understand.”

We have confirmed that this is currently an issue after attempting to use Google Assistant on our own smart home products. And it seems the problem isn’t restricted to the US, as some of our non-US-based writers are also experiencing the issue as well.

Thankfully, the malfunction seems to be limited to controlling smart home devices as Google Assistant is still able to do other tasks, like answering queries or having two-way conversations. It also appears that the issue is specifically unique to Google Assistant as Google Home is still working as it should.

This is the kind of problem that tends to get fixed quickly. So if you’re experiencing this issue, it’s likely safe to assume the app will go back to normal soon.

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