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Gemini (formerly Bard) now has an app that replaces Google Assistant on Android

iOS users will be able to access Gemini through the Google app.

Published onFebruary 8, 2024

Gemini on Android
  • Gemini (formerly Google Bard) now has an Android app.
  • The app also gives users an option to replace Google Assistant on their phones with Gemini.
  • iOS users will be able to access Gemini through the Google app.

Google Bard has transformed into Gemini, and the name change also comes with a new app. Yes, you can now access the newly christened Gemini (formerly Bard) on your Android phones through the Gemini app.

Google is also throwing you another curve ball. After downloading the app, you can opt-in to remove Google Assistant and use only Gemini as the primary AI guide on your phone. The “Hey, Google” wake word will remain the same. Only now, you will be summoning Gemini, not Assistant. Google says you can choose to stay with Assistant, which you might want to do since the Gemini replacement does not incorporate all the existing Assistant features for now.

You’ll still be able to use Gemini to set timers, make calls, and control smart home devices. However, not all Assistant features are porting over just yet. Google says that will also happen sometime in the future. Sounds like the company is hammering the first nail in Google Assistant’s coffin.

Nevertheless, if you switch to Gemini on your Android phone after downloading the dedicated app, you can access it the same way you would Assistant. You can press and hold the power button, corner swipe, or use the wake word, just like before. When you do that, a new Gemini overlay will pop up instead of Google Assistant.

Google says Gemini can also understand what’s happening on your phone’s screen to give you contextual help. So you can, for instance, generate a caption for a photo you’ve just clicked or ask a question about something you’re reading.

Since the Gemini Android app is based on Google’s Gemini Pro model, expect most of the processing of your AI tasks to happen on the cloud.

Meanwhile, iOS users are not getting a dedicated Gemini app. They will be able to access the AI from the Google app, though. This feature will roll out in the coming weeks, allowing iOS users to tap on a Gemini toggle to chat with the AI, create custom images, get help writing social posts, and more.

Gemini will roll out on Android and iOS phones in the US starting today. It will be available in English. Google says you’ll be able to access it in more locations in English, Japanese, and Korean starting next week. An even broader rollout will follow.

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