The Google Home app is core to how you control and interact with dozens of different devices, so it’s understandably one of Google’s most feature-packed applications. Now it’s only getting more interesting with version 2.28, as the new update hints at the upcoming rebranding of Android TV, as well as adds some new features surrounding routines and home presence-sensing that were teased earlier this year.
Presence sensing uses Google’s AI smarts to determine whether or not people are home based on their device activity. One of the interesting additions this info enables is support for new activities for setting up Home and Away routines. They make it easy to trigger specific smart home actions like turning lights off or on when leaving a house or returning to it. The Home app notes that the more devices that grant it location permissions through presence sensing, the more accurate it will be at predicting when to start these routines.
Mishaal Rahman tweeted out screenshots of the new additions.
Along with these new routine activations, version 2.28 also adds support for OnHub network management. (Remember the OnHub routers?) The network speed test now shows history for the past 30 days, which is valuable data to know when negotiating for a cheaper price with your wily Internet provider. Google is also improving the experience for group Google Meet video calls by allowing users to invite participants directly from the Home feed. Finally, the update adds new notification categories that you can enable/disable at your whim, including separate channels for People & devices, Account updates, and Calls & messages.