Google Home can now be used as an intercom system, powered by Google Assistant.
In a post announcing the rollout, Alex Duong, the product manager for Google Home, said that the use cases for this update will allow, for example, a parent broadcasting a morning wakeup call to the Google Home devices scattered through the home, a mom or dad announcing that a meal is ready, or a returning family updating the family members at home about their impending arrival.
The connected devices are part of Google's hardware division which includes the Pixel smartphone line, Google Home Mini, Google Home Max, the Pixelbook, the Pixelbook Pen, and Pixel Buds. The virtual personal assistant allowing users to broadcast to and through these devices is Google Assistant.
Launched in October last year, Google Assistant was the first step by Alphabet to compete with Apple's Siri and Microsoft's Cortana. Beyond serving as a hands-free voice-search assistant for Google Search, the service has crept its use cases into all hardware as well, with the integration announced last month.
The announcement is yet another signal that advertisers should rope in agencies with capabilities around voice-based search in order to capitalize on the eventual monetisation options as they roll out.
The hardware category represents roughly 3% of Google's quarterly earnings, with the third-quarter earnings report citing hardware as a contributor toward US$1 billion in revenue, due to Google Home devices and the Pixel 2.