Google Assistant to support Singaporean English this month

Google Assistant will soon be able to talk to you in Singlish.
Google Assistant will soon be able to talk to you in Singlish.ST PHOTO: VINCENT CHANG

SINGAPORE - Search giant Google announced on Thursday (Nov 2) that its Google Assistant will support Singaporean English with an impending update. The virtual voice assistant helps users perform a variety of tasks, from answering queries to setting reminders.

The update is set to be rolled out over the next few weeks to Android smartphones (Android 6.0 Marshmallow and above). When updated, Google Assistant will be better at recognising the Singaporean accent and will provide localised information to users. For instance, users can ask the Google Assistant for directions to the nearest POSB ATM or the distance to the nearest 7-Eleven convenience store.

Users can activate the Google Assistant on supported devices by pressing and holding the Home button or by simply saying "OK, Google".

Google Pixel 2 XL users will be able to use the Google Assistant in Singaporean English from Nov 15 when the phone goes on sale. The update will also be rolled out to Apple iPhones soon, but Google has yet to provide a timeline for this.

Including Singapore, Google Assistant is now available in 12 countries and supports eight languages, including French, German, Japanese and Korean.