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Smart Home

How to create reminders on Google Home

Google Home's reminders are getting even better. Here's how to use location-based reminders.

Ian Knighton/CNET

Believe it or not, reminders weren't always on the Google Home's ($129 at Dell Home) features list. Despite voice reminders being something both Google Now and Google Assistant on Android phones had been capable of for years, it wasn't until nearly a year after the original Google Home hit shelves that creating reminders was possible with Google's smart speakers.

The upshot is that Google has continued to improve reminders. Not to be confused with the feature that would remember where you put your keys, there are a couple ways you can create reminders with your Google Home, either directly from the speaker itself or from an Android or iOS device.

Here is everything you can do with reminders on the Google Home.

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Create a time-based reminder from Google Home

To create a reminder from Google Home, there are a handful of commands you can use. Say something like:

  • "OK, Google, remind me to go for a run tomorrow at 8 a.m."
  • "OK, Google, remind me to go to the grocery store every Sunday morning."

I always say "OK, Google," but "Hey, Google" works too. You can be specific with times or use general times, like morning or evening. And you can also use contextual times, such as "20 minutes from now."

To manage your reminders with Google Home, say things like:

  • "OK, Google, what are my reminders?"
  • "OK, Google, what are my reminders for tomorrow?"
  • "OK, Google, what is my reminder to go for a run?"
  • "OK, Google, delete all of my reminders."
  • "OK, Google, delete my reminder to go the grocery store."
  • "OK, Google, delete my reminders for tomorrow."

Create a location-based reminder from Google Home

More recently, Google rolled out a new type of reminder for Google Home users: those based on a location.

You'll use the same basic construction to create any location-based reminder. Say something like, "OK, Google, remind me to [action] when I get to [location]." Here are some more specific examples:

  • "OK, Google, remind me to water the plants when I get home."  
  • "OK, Google, remind me to buy bread when I'm at the grocery store."
  • "OK, Google, remind me to buy coffee beans while I'm at Starbucks."

Google has made it so these location-based reminders work with four different categories of locations: specific street addresses, your predefined home and work addresses (for these, you'd just say "when I'm at home" or "while I'm at work"), generic stores (such as grocery store or coffee shop) and specific businesses (Walmart, Trader Joe's and so on).

And since your Google Home speakers stay at home, the notifications for all location-based reminders will appear on your phone when you reach the set location of the reminder. (For this to work on an iOS device, you'll need to have the Google Assistant app installed.)

Create reminders from Android or iOS

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Screenshot by Taylor Martin/CNET

If you'd rather manually create reminders from your phone, you can do that using Assistant on Android or iOS. Just make sure the phone or tablet is logged into the correct account and connected to the same Wi-Fi network as your Google Home speaker.

Within the Assistant app, you can speak the same verbal commands to create a reminder using your voice. Or you can type out a reminder manually.

To type a reminder, launch Assistant and tap the blue button in the top right to open the Explore tab. Tap Your Stuff, then tap Add Reminder. Type in a title and select a time and whether it should repeat. Tap the check mark in the upper right corner to save it.

To edit reminders from a phone, go back to Your Stuff and tap See All. Tap on a specific reminder to edit or delete it.

Reminder notifications

When it's time for your reminder, you'll receive a push notification on your phone and Google Home will light up and say, "I have a reminder for [name]." A single white LED will remain lit for the following 10 minutes.

If you miss a reminder, you can say, "OK, Google, what are my notifications?" or, "OK, Google, what are my reminders?" Check reminders on your phone by returning to Your Stuff in the Google app.

To turn off reminder notifications, open the Google Home app on Android or iOS and tap the three-line hamburger button in the top left to expand the left menu. Go to More settings and select Phone or your Google Home device under Devices. Beside Notifications, tap the toggle to turn notifications off.

First published Sept. 27, 2017.
Update, March 26: This article has been updated to include additional reminders features for Google Home speakers.