Google keeps adding features to its voice assistant portfolio. Yesterday we saw Walmart integration go live, the addition of reminders and Google replacing Bing for Siri search. Today, we are highlighting a new Google Assistant feature: text-based search for third-party voice apps. Yes. That’s right. You could search for Assistant apps or ask about other features by voice, but there was no text search feature or any other search capability in the Google Assistant app store on mobile called “Explore.” You could only browser third-party apps by scrolling through categories. This wasn’t a big deal earlier this year, but now that there are several hundred third-party apps, new navigation tools were necessary.
Search Third-Party Google Assistant Apps
But wait, you could enter text into the Google Assistant conversation. That’s true, but if you entered “Open Table” into the conversation dialogue, it would take you to opentable.com, not the Open Table Google Assistant App. What this new feature does is make it easier to find third-party Google Assistant apps. The Amazon Alexa skill store on mobile and web has had this feature since it launched. Third-party app search is a necessary user experience capability and essential to app developers looking to drive user discovery.
Where to Find Google Assistant App Search
You can find Google Assistant third-party app search by touching the small tray icon in the upper right of your launch screen on both Android and iOS. At the top of the Explore page you will see a search bar. Tap it to search. When you go into the “More” list search within the different Assistant app categories you will also see a search icon in the upper right of the screen.
This is a long overdue feature and just in time. As the number of third-party Google Assistant apps is starting to grow more quickly, search will be a key method for app discovery in the Google voice ecosystem.