The Google Assistant app that powers yoursmart speaker — you can use it to , or even . But there are privacy issues to be aware of with any smart device, including Google’s, not to mention that make the experience unwieldy or frustrating. Luckily, a lot of are things you can turn off with a simple toggle.
Whether you’reor just want a more natural conversation experience, here are five things we recommend turning off to get a simpler and safer Google Assistant experience.
1. Voice recording settings
Google announcedin 2020. Unless you opt in, Google won’t save your audio recordings or share them with its human analyzers to improve Google’s algorithms. However, if you opted in or have previously saved audio recordings, you can choose how long Google keeps them or manually delete them.
To adjust these settings, open your Home app, tap on your profile picture in the top right, followed by Assistant Settings. There, you’ll land on the You tab. Select Your Data in the Assistant and scroll down to Audio Recordings. Tap to see options for saving, reviewing and deleting recordings. Here’s more information on.
2. Continued conversation
without you having to say “Hey, Google” a second time. While this is handy, the extra listening can sometimes be less than seamless, especially when you don’t have a follow-up question or you’re just asking a question of someone else in the room. Luckily, you can turn off this feature.
To turn off Continued Conversation in the Home app, tap on your profile picture in the top right, followed by Assistant Settings. In the next screen, navigate to the Assistant tab. There you’ll see several options including Continued Conversation. You’ll be able to toggle off Continued Conversation and see which speakers it will affect.
3. ‘Hey Google’ sensitivity
If you feel like you’re always waking up your smart speakers accidentally, the “Hey Google” sensitivity may be too high. You canif it isn’t hearing you well enough or if it mistakes other words for its wake word.
To adjust the sensitivity in the Home app, tap on your profile picture in the top right, followed by Assistant Settings. In the next screen, navigate to the Assistant tab and you’ll see several options including “Hey Google” sensitivity. There you’ll be able to adjust the sensitivity for each individual speaker in your home. Select the speaker you’d like to adjust and choose from five settings from “least sensitive” to “most sensitive.”
4. Camera settings
If you use a Google-enabled smart display like the, or , you may want to keep your camera disabled when you’re not making video calls. Each display does this a little differently. While JBL and Lenovo offer physical shutter options, you don’t get a built-in shutter with Google’s in-house display, the Nest Hub Max.
Instead, there’s a toggle button on the back of the display to disable the camera and microphone. An indicator light beside the camera lens shows the current status. This is a tough one, because you’ll need to remember to switch it on and off each time you use a camera feature. Still, having the option to make sure your camera is off when it needs to be is important.
5. Activity controls
Like voice recordings,. If you’re concerned about privacy, adjusting these settings offers some peace of mind.
In the Home app, tap on your profile picture in the top right, followed by Assistant Settings. Tap the three dots on the top right of your screen and select Google activity controls. There, you’ll see a page with options for controlling which information. You also can turn on auto-delete and choose how often your data is removed.
Whether you adjust one or all of these settings, personalizing your voice assistant can make the entire experience much more pleasant. If you live in a large household,can help everyone live in harmony with the same devices. More of an Amazon Echo fan? Here are , too, and . Plus, .