Google Home looks set to support multiple users soon

An update to the Google Home app is telling people that “multiple users are now supported” — although, it seems the message might have been published by accident, as actual multi-user functionality isn’t yet available in the app.

The message, which appears in the app’s “Discover” tab, tells users: “Now, you and others in your home can get a personalized experience from your Assistant on your Google Home.” It’s only the latest sign that multi-user support will be on the way soon. Previously, a tear-down of the app’s code revealed that the feature was in the works.

The message as it appears in Google Home.
Image: Sam Byford / The Verge

Multi-user functionality is clearly needed for home assistants like Google Home and Amazon’s Alexa, which have the ability to tap into all sorts of personal accounts (including email, music, and more). Even with multi-user support, though, neither Google and Amazon have begun to tackle the problem of user identification — that is, recognizing different users by their voice, instead of requiring them to switch accounts manually.

We’ve reached out to Google about this change to the Home app, and will update this article if and when we hear more.

Update April 11th, 6:00AM ET: The message has now been removed from the app, suggesting we’ll be waiting for multi-user support a while longer yet.

Comments

I just want "how’s my day" to support multiple calendars for one user.

The voice recognition aspect is the thing that is needed. I was really excited about this until I heard it was switching via the app and not dynamically switching based on voice recognition.

I’d love it if it detected who was speaking and used a different voice for the assistant so you knew for sure you were under your account.

Isn’t voice recognition already a solved problem?

Yes, please. Maybe it already does it to some extent but it would be great if it did a better job learning you and your friend’s voices. Mine gets activated by the TV too often.

So now it will deliver personalized ads to the user. No thanks.

It might be overly simplistic but why not just let different trigger words activate different user accounts? So I might say "ok google" (ugh) and maybe my wife says "hello computer" or what-have-you.

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