Now it’s personal: Home picks up support for multiple accounts, voice recognition

BY GreenBot Staff

Published 20 Apr 2017

The assistants in our living rooms are supposed to be as personal as they are on our phones, but it’s never really felt that way. Anyone who walks into our homes can say, “OK, ,” or “Hey, exa” get access to whatever they want, from upcoming appointments to the kind of music we like, even addressing them by your name. But a new feature rolling out to Home looks to add a personal touch to the impersonal home speaker.

Instead of being tied to a single account, will now let you set up multiple accounts on your Home device (up to six in all), so you’ll be able to get specific results from Assistant. And what’s more, it will recognize your voice so you won’t have to ask it to switch from a different account.

It works pretty much like it does on our phones. First, open the Home app look for a card that says, “Multi-user is available.” (If you don’t see the message, tap on the icon in the top right to see all of your connected devices, select your Home in the list, tap nk your account.) From there, you’ll be able to teach your Assistant to underst your voice, so when you say, “OK, ,” it will provide your specific information.

explained how it works in a Thursday blog post: “en you connect your account on a Home, we ask you to say the phrases ‘OK, ‘ ‘Hey, ‘ two times each. Those phrases are then analyzed by a neural network, which can detect certain characteristics of a person’s voice. From that point on, any time you say, ‘OK, ‘ or ‘Hey, ‘ to your Home, the neural network will compare the sound of your voice to its previous analysis so we can underst if it’s you speaking or not.”

Then you’ll be able to say, “OK, , play my cooking playlist,” the speaker will begin to play your music, not your kid’s or spouse’s, though certain features will still need to be set up in the app. And it’s not shutting out your friends either. Home will still listen to unregistered voices when asked for things like facts games.

The update is rolling out to all U.S. Home users will exp to the U.K., where Home only recently launched, in the coming months.

Now we’re talking: Home is still learning its place in our households, but both of these features were at the very top of our wish list. Aside from the privacy concerns, it’s annoying to have to funnel everything through a single account, multiple users is an excellent addition. But we really dig the voice recognition feature. no longer have to worry about strangers barging into our homes saying “OK, ” to order 5,000 rolls of toilet paper.