Coming to tablets and more Android phones

Google Storyboard app main

Google Storyboard app main

In a blog post on Wednesday, Google announced that its eponymous personal assistant will hit tablets and Android devices running 5.0 Lollipop and newer "in the coming weeks".

With the Assistant on tablets, users can set reminders, add to their shopping lists and control smart devices like plugs and lights.

It'll roll out to Android tablet users in U.S. who've set their device language to English, specifically tablets running Android 6.0 Marshmallow, 7.0 Nougat, and 8.0 Oreo. Later, some months it was rolled out to all the Android smartphones running on Nougat and Marshmallow.

The late release of Assistant is a nice addition for the 26.3 percent of Android users on the three-year-old OS, but it shows a weakness in the way Google updates its software.

This OS is a toned down version of the latest Android Oreo OS which is now present in high-end devices. It will be coming to more languages next year. The Assistant originally launched on a single phone, the Google Pixel, and has slowly been creeping across the Android landscape. Even Italy, Japan, Germany, Brazil and Korea will be getting the Assistant. Google Assistant has only been available on smartphones.

An update to Google Play Services means that these older devices can now access Google Assistant. Alexa is a main selling point for Amazon's Fire tablet lineup, so this will be a welcome feature for Android tablet owners. You will see an Assistant app icon on your "All apps" list.

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