Make yourself at Home: the 12 best Google Home tips and tricks

7) Create a voice-controlled Sonos system

OK, it won't be a real Sonos system, as Google Home isn't compatible yet and its speaker is really only best for background music. But it is also a much cheaper way to get voice-controlled, multi-room tunes, particularly if you already have a bunch of speakers that play nicely with Chromecast dongles.

To set it up, tap the ‘devices’ button in the top right-hand corner of the app to see your list of available sources. Now press the three-dot card menu on one of the devices, and choose ‘create Group’. Choose a name for the group, then tick the other devices you want in the group from the list. For a full instructions head to Google’s help page.

This setup lets you play different songs in different groups (for example, downstairs and bedroom), though not with streaming services like Spotify, which don't support multiple streams from one account. Still, it beats waiting for the Alexa-Sonos tech wedding of the year...

8) Make it a family affair

One of Google Home’s big advantages over the Amazon Echo right now is that it supports multiple users and can recognise you by voice. This means your whole family or flatshare can get personalised ‘my day’ summaries, and share subscription services like Spotify and Google Play Music, without pressing a button.

To train your Home to recognise your voice, go to the Devices menu in the top right-hand corner of the app, then go to either ‘multi user is now available’ or ‘link your account’. Once you’ve said a few test phrases, your loyal Home will now recognise you by voice. Even though it can’t yet separate work and personal Google accounts, that surely still deserves a biscuit.

9) Enjoy its animal impersonations

We don’t know about you, but we often find ourselves at home wondering exactly what an ostrich sounds like.

Luckily, Google Home can settle this debate and do the same for dozens of different creatures, thanks to the recent addition of animal audio file recordings.

Just say “Hey Google, make an [insert animal] sound” to hear its recording. The range is impressive, though koalas have been curiously overlooked. Maybe they use iPhones.

10) Save reminders to Evernote

It might let you voice control Netflix, but Google Home can’t yet save voice reminders. Yep, it’s bizarre. Still, there is a IFTTT workaround for Evernote users.

Once you’ve connected your Evernote account to IFTTT, just switch on this recipe and say “Hey Google, create a note…”, followed by the reminder you’d like to save. In Evernote, you’ll get a note that starts “I asked my Google Assistant…”.

11) Bring voice control to Netflix

One of Google Home's coolest tricks is the ability to fling content onto a nearby telly through the power of your voice. Netflix and YouTube are currently compatible, with more services hopefully being added soon, and all you'll need is a TV with a Chromecast attached or built-in Chromecast tech.

Google's how-to will help you get your TV setup in the app, and from there, you'll be able to say "Hey Google, watch Stranger Things on TV," or "Play Drake music videos on Chromecast".

Voice commands also let you navigate through Netflix and YouTube once you're up and running with content, although you can't yet specifiy which episode you'd like it to start playing. Still, it'll help give your smartphone a rest for once.

12) Help it make friends with Alexa

You may have put your Home and Echo in different rooms, lest they get in an argument over who’s got the best jokes.

But put them together and they get on surprisingly well. Say “Hey Google, say hi to Alexa…” and the Home’s puppy-ish enthusiasm will be coolly acknowledged by the cat-like Echo.

After that, it’s a bit of an awkward silence. Back to the kitchen for you, Alexa...

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