Google Home finally adds support for multiple users

Google Home finally gets a long awaited feature

As anticipated, Google officially announced in a blog post that its popular Bluetooth speaker – the Google Home, has gained multiple users support.

Starting this week, Google Home allows users to add up to six household members which can connect with their individual accounts. Remember that in a previous article we were wondering whether Google Home would acquire the ability to recognize an user’s individual voice? The good news is that the answer is yes, it has.

To take advantage of the new Google Home functionality, users need to make sure they have the latest Google Home app installed and then look for the “multi-user is available card”. If no such card is available, Google says to click on the icon on the top right to view all the connected devices. When Google Home pops up, users will need to select the “Link your account” feature. The company notes that for certain features like personalized music or commute info, users will need to set up preferences from within the app, as well.

If you’re wondering how Google Home manages to distinguish your voice from your partner’s or your roommate, Google explains. In order for the setup to work, users will need to train the speaker by saying “OK Google” and “Hey Google” two times each.

The phrases are then analyzed by a neural network which has been designed to detect certain characteristics in a human voice. Each time you will utter a phrase, the neuronal network will compare the sounds you produce to the previous analysis, to decide whether it’s you who is addressing it or your child or partner.

The feature is currently being rolled out in the US, but will be hitting the UK in “the upcoming months”.

While the same feature is available with Amazon’s Echo speaker, for the moment Alexa can’t recognize users by their voices, so users have to switch accounts using voice commands.

  • Jack Smith

    This really shows the difference between the Echo and the Google Home (GH). The GH is intelligent and functions more like a human would and the Echo is a computer and functions similar.

    So accounts on the Echo you use a passcode versus the GH you talk to it and it know who you are.

    If kids are not allowed to turn down the thermostat then no passcode or anything like that but instead will now lower for kids but will for you and your wife.

    Of say guest can not turn down the hot tub but you, wife and kids can. Then no awkward passcodes that can be overheard, etc.

    Everything is like this with the Echo versus the GH. You have a list of commands that you memorize with the Echo and then have to use.

    So there is a command that is “song goes like …”.

    With the GH there is no commands and instead you just talk to it with whatever you have. So say play “Sheeran Grammys” and you get Ed Sheeran performance at the 2017 Grammys.

    Have zero idea why the two are compared because really they are fundamentally different.