Google Assistant - Android Thing bilboard at CES 2019

Google Assistant can almost do everything online for you — it can even make donations on your behalf. Initially introduced in Google messaging app Allo, you can now find the smart assistant on tablets, computers, smart speakers, and many other devices. Now, Assistant is on every mobile phone running Android, which makes it present on over one billion devices.

Google Assistant can be quite helpful, scheduling your tasks, helping you with searches, and suggesting music among other things. However, it also has the peculiar habit of popping up from time to time for no reason. This can get very annoying, especially if it interrupts something you’re doing.

It can also be a little creepy to hear a robotic voice emanating from your pocket all of a sudden. It scared the socks off me one night when I was fast asleep, and it suddenly decided to activate itself and become vocal.

Why does Google Assistant pop up?

Google Assistant usually pops up if you press your home button even a moment too long. Alternatively, it can also happen even when your phone is resting peacefully in your pocket if it has a physical home button. Certain companies have also incorporated a special button for it, usually located on the side of their phones.

If you have had enough of Google Assistant’s unpredictable antics, here are two possible solutions.

Turn off Google Assistant by deactivating it completely

You can deactivate it completely if it is proving to be too troublesome to handle. Here are the steps you need to follow.

  • Long press the home button on your phone so Google Assistant pops up (for the last time).
  • Press the blue email or mailbox icon on the right.
  • Press the three dots located on the upper right side of the screen.
  • Tap the Settings option on the dropdown list that pops up.
  • Once the settings menu opens, go to Devices.
  • Press the Phone icon located under devices.
  • Toggle the Google Assistant slider to the left to disable it.

And voila! Google Assistant will no longer pop up uninvited.

Disable the Home Popup button

Alternatively, you can disable the home button function linked to Google Assistant. This less permanent solution will save you from the constant pestering of the AI. The procedure is straightforward on most Android phones.

  • Press the Settings button on your Android dropdown menu.
  • Select the Applications’ icon.
  • Move to the Default Applications options
  • Press the area where it says Device Assistant app.
  • There, you will be able to decide which app you want popping up when you long press the home button. You can also choose no app if you want the shortcut to be disabled for all applications.

Uninstall updates

A more extreme method of turning off Google Assistant is to uninstall the OS updates and revert to an older version of it. However, this will disable other features provided by the more advanced operating system. Weigh your options before taking such drastic action that can have permanent consequences.

So there you have it. Two simple ways and one not-so-simple way of removing the Google Assistant menace from your life!