I have been increasingly astounded at how often Google Assistant will correctly transcribe a voice command to text using text-to-speech, and then despite having the correct command, completely ignoring the command and doing whatever it wants to do instead. Google has made certain that it is not possible to improve their product by giving feedback or reporting failures. Message boards where support staff maintain a presence routinely take a blame-the-user or poor-voice-map position and provide users with tone-deaf and useless advice that waste user’s time and effort.
As such, I think it would be amusing to catalog examples of times when I’ve told Google Assistant to “do this please” and Google Assistant replies, “I understand perfectly what you’ve told me to do, and now I’m going to do something completely unrelated, useless, and wrong instead.”
Keep in mind that Google Assistant is promoted as a hands-free safer alternative to minimize distracted driving. A driver screaming at his phone to do as it is told is far more distracted than one who’s correctly heard voice command is followed.
As this will be a work in progress, I’ll figure out an attractive way to list these errors as we go along.
- What I say, “Hey Google [pause for beep] divide one-hundred and two dot eight one by three.”
- What appears as text “Divide 102.81 by 3”
- Google Assistant’s Response: [displays software calculator] “The answer to one divided by three is point three three three three three.”