Google home speaker on yellow background

Google Home is a range of smart speaker devices first introduced in 2016. Although Google Home devices were rebranded to a new name in 2019 (Google Nest), they are part of the same product family and offer the same functions.

Your Google Home device can do everything other voice-enabled virtual assistants can. It can tell you the weather, play music, give you cooking recipes, control other smart devices, provide traffic information and so much more. However, it can also do many other things you might not expect.

Discover the full capabilities of your Google Home or Google Nest device and find new ways to use your favorite assistant.

Play Voice-Enabled Games

One of the most exciting features of your Google Home devices is playing fully-featured, voice-activated games without peripherals. 

Google Home games take advantage of your voice assistant and the device’s speakers and microphones to offer a wide range of fun experiences for the whole family. Here are a few games you can play from your Google Home or Google Nest device:

Song Quiz

Test your knowledge of pop music from the 1960s to the 2020s with Song Quiz Google Home. Play alone or with friends and family and challenge your knowledge of the best pop songs with this voice-enabled music trivia game. Pick a decade, listen to the song excerpt, guess the artist and song title, and score the most points to win.

To enable Song Quiz on your Google Home device, say, “Hey Google, let’s play Song Quiz” or any other compatible wake phrases.

Magic Word

Google Home Magic Word is a unique game that takes advantage of your device’s smart audio and displays to create a fast-paced, family-friendly puzzle game. In Magic Word, the players are shown four GIF images with a common theme. The first person to speak the Magic Word (the theme uniting all four GIFs) wins the round.

To enable Magic Word on your Google Home device, say “Talk to Magic Word” or “Play Magic Word.”

Broadcast Media to Multiple Devices

If you have a Google Home device and multiple smart speakers and displays it can connect to across your house, you can link them together using the Speaker Group function.

Google Home will broadcast to all your connected and grouped devices when linked together. This makes it possible to play music seamlessly through all of them simultaneously, so there is no need for an expensive amp and speaker system.

A similar feature is the Broadcast feature, which lets you send a message or a sound effect to all connected Google Home devices, turning them into your personal home PA system. For example, you can make Google Home say “Dinner is served” in the evening or play the sound of a rooster crowing in the morning to wake up the family together.

Set Up Daily Routines

Google Home lets you create your own routines and streamline long strings of voice commands you frequently use into a single, easy-to-remember sentence.

For example, you can set up a routine called “Relaxing mode” which automatically changes your room’s lighting profile and puts on music from one of your favorite playlists without ordering Google Home to perform individual steps.

Google Home also comes bundled with preset, ready-made routines, such as “Hey Google, good morning” or “Hey Google, I’m home.”

Find (and Secure) a Misplaced Phone or Tablet

Man holding iPhone with 3D location tracker

Your Google Home assistant can help you find any connected mobile device, such as your smartphone or a tablet, regardless of its make and model. With the voice command, “Hey Google, find my phone,” your Google Home device will use Google Find My Device and make your phone or tablet play a sound at maximum volume, allowing you to find it.

If your device has location data enabled, this function can also tell you its geographic location, making it a convenient feature if you misplaced your device while out of the home. 

If your device has the Google Assistant app installed, you can use the Shortcut feature to control your phone through Google Home remotely. For example, you can configure a Shortcut so when you say, “OK Google, lock my phone,” the Assistant will lock your device immediately. This function works through Google Home, making it possible to lock a misplaced phone remotely.

Image Credits:

Gayan/Adobe Stock

Production Perig/Adobe Stock