Android phone owners should be able to do magic now, thanks to a neat partnership between Google and the upcoming film "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them," which is set in the Harry Potter wizarding universe. But apparently, some of our phones flunked out of first-semester Charms class.
Google's blog on Tuesday announced three spells, straight from Potter-land, that are supposed to work with Android phones. We tried them out, to mixed results.
Saying, "OK Google, Lumos!" is supposed to turn the phone's flashlight on. This mostly worked, but be sure to pronounce "Lumos" carefully. Once, Google thought I was asking the phone to find the Seattle bar Neumo's, which rhymes with "Lumos." (Not sure what the drinking age was at Hogwarts, but am pretty sure that Harry wouldn't make the cut, at least in the early films.)
To turn the flashlight off, say "OK Google, Nox!" This worked better than "Lumos" -- not once did my Android give me results for "bagels and lox" or "Amanda Knox" instead.
And to turn off your phone's ringer and notifications, you're supposed to say "Silencio!" But when I did, my phone replied, "Here is some information about Valencia." I tried again and it offered me info on "Dillon, Colorado." Guess Google really wants to be my travel agent. Third time's the charm (or the spell), as on try No. 3 it did silence my phone. Just like magic! If you're really bad at it!
No question, being able to use Harry Potter spells with your phone is a cool perk for Potterheads, but the struggle to make them work makes me feel a little like poor Ron Weasley and his broken wand. Good thing I was just turning a flashlight on and off and not Stupefying a Death Eater.