"Hey, Google" might be an integral part of your day, but do you know everything you can do with Google Home ( $69 at Walmart) Assistant? The possibilities are almost endless, from recipe help in the kitchen to waking up on time in the morning, keeping party guests entertained and catching up on your favorite podcasts. Google Home can do a ton.
We've got five essential tips you'll use on the regular.
Setting an alarm comes with a perk
Asking Google to wake you up in the morning is a bit easier than setting the alarm on your phone's clock or -- gasp -- a real clock. Simply say, "Hey Google, set my alarm for..." and give your desired time. The alarm will sound and to shut it off, "stop."
Of course, you don't have to be turning in for the night to use the alarm. You can also say "Hey Google, set a timer for..." which keeps your hands free during workouts, cooking or if you're coloring your hair. To silence the alarm, again, just say "stop." You don't have to say, "Hey Google or OK Google" before that.
Listen to music, news and podcasts
To play your favorite songs podcasts, make sure your preferred music app -- YouTube Music, Google Play Music, Spotify, Pandora and Deezer are supported -- is linked to your Google Home app. From there, you can ask Google to play a specific song or genre (i.e. "Hey Google, play '90s rock"). If you like a song, you can ask Google to save it on the app. To end your tunes "Hey Google, stop the music" is your go to phrase.
You can also use the smart speaker with podcasts, but you have to ask for a specific one (i.e. "...play My Favorite Murder"). If you stopped listening in the middle of an episode, either on Google Home or your phone, it'll pick up where you left off. To hear the headlines you can customize your favorite news sources on the Google Home app and change the order they're played in. Most news stations have a podcast, so you can ask Google to play that, as well.
Get the weather forecast, even next week's
Are you going to need an umbrella today? Did it just get really cold? Just ask Google what the weather is like and it will give you the current temperature and an overview for the rest of the day wherever you are. Google can give forecasts further out, as well, if you ask for the weekend or next week.
Google has a few games -- I'd recommend trying Mad Libs, Lucky Trivia, or Song Quiz first. These can be fun party games or a good way to keep kids occupied on a rainy afternoon.
Movies playing near you
The days of calling the movie theater and listening to a recording read titles are long gone. When you ask "Which movies are playing?," Google will list a few titles, and ask which film interests you. From there, Google can help you pick a time and tell you how to purchase tickets at your nearest theater through Fandango.
Published June 14, 2019. Update, June 22 at 9 a.m. PT.