Google smart displays get more family-focused with Life360 maps and more

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Google is adding a new set of family-focused features.


Google

Google smart display features have steadily expanded all year in the wake of so many families spending more time at home. One Wednesday, Google announced one more set of updates to make family life smarter on Google Assistant-enabled smart displays such as the Nest Hub and Nest Hub Max.

Family Notes

New Family Notes are launching on smart displays. Household members will be able to create digital sticky notes to leave reminders for others. 

Family Bell effects

Family Bell appeared on smart displays earlier this year as a way to set family reminders throughout the day. Google is updating this feature with new sound effects and bell suggestions on smart speakers and displays. You’ll also soon be able to pause bells for the day if you’d like to skip your regularly scheduled programming. 

Learning activities

With millions of kids learning from home, smart displays are due for a few educational updates. Google is adding learning activities to its smart displays. Ask,”Hey Google, what can I learn with my family?” to choose from one of the learning activities shown on your screen. Content comes from providers like ABCmouse, a digital education company. 

There’s also a new interactive story category, that aims to bring stories to life. Say, “Hey Google, tell me a story,” to find out more. Interactive stories from Noggin, Capstone and more allow you to flip through pages, follow along word by word, and see the story unfold with animations.

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Life360 and Google Maps will soon show family member locations. 


Google

Life360 for younger users

Life360 offers tracking and safety information for members of your household and family. Google Assistant users aged 13 and older will now be able to see an update on their family’s locations from a Life360 and Google Maps integration. Ask, “Hey Google, where’s my family?” or ask for a family member by name by name by saying, “Hey Google, where’s Dave?”

This feature is rolling out not just to smart displays, but also to Google Assistant-enabled smart speakers, as well as Android and iOS phones. Google recently announced a partnership with ADT, which also worked with Life360 as part of its ADT Go mobile app. This integration with Life360 doesn’t appear to be related to Google’s ADT partnership.

A new family tab offers options for the whole household. 


Google

All of these new features will soon be available in one central place within the new Family tab on Google’s smart displays. Google didn’t have a specific date for new feature rollouts, but used the phrase “later this year.”

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