Google recently announced that its Assistant service will be made available to phones that don’t access the internet through a call centre. The interesting service is being rolled out in India first and will be free for callers.
Google said callers will be able to;
- Get traffic updates,
- check scores and
- locate businesses around them
Whether this can become a global thing is yet to be seen but considering that in India alone there’s a significant portion of the nation’s 1.3 billion who aren’t connected (500 million people are said to have access to the internet).
Globally there are expectations that by the end of this year 3.8 billion people or more might still not have access to the internet.
Another thing to look out for from Google’s experiment will be whether or not calling in will actually gain traction as people are a bit apprehensive of calling. Of course, you won’t be talking to a human being so that should allay some of the fears callers may have.
The biggest benefit is without a doubt the fact that you don’t need data to access Assistant’s library of information which is a great thing that would no doubt be welcome in countries like our own where price of data has rendered some people’s smartphone’s useless.
If Google and Facebook could play nice – having Assistant on WhatsApp would definitely be cool – but that appears to be a pipedream…