Google’s AI models are rolling out to everyone in the U.S. via the new Gemini app for Android and as a feature in the Google app for iPhone. Until recently, Gemini was known as Google Bard. Gemini is available for free, but there’s also a paid plan called Gemini Advanced.
A slow farewell to Google Assistant?
Google has been working its way up the AI chain via improvements to Bard, which have resulted in the launch of Gemini. In news that may not be so surprising, Google allows you to replace Google Assistant with Gemini on Android. This follows the recent news of major layoffs in the Google Assistant team and the subsequent deletion of a long list of Assistant features.
Once the Gemini app is installed, you’ll be able to launch it the same way that you launch Google Assistant on your Android phone. Google says you’ll be able to use Gemini by hitting the power button, using the corner swipe gesture on some phones, or just using the “Hey Google” voice command. You can send queries by typing them into the Gemini app, voice commands, or by sending images to the AI assistant.
The experience will be different on your iPhone, since Apple doesn’t let people replace Siri as the default voice assistant. Instead, Gemini will be available as a toggle in the Google app.
What does Gemini actually do?
Gemini is Google’s take on generative AI, which means that it can do all the things these types of services have become famous for. You’ll be able to see an overlay every time you fire up Gemini and ask the AI assistant to create things for you. Popular use cases include creating resumés, writing emails, captions, or asking for further information on blog posts you’re reading.
You’ll also be able to generate images using Gemini—its abilities aren’t limited to text. Google claims that you’ll be able to take a photo of a flat tire and ask Gemini to help you fix it. The assistant can also help you plan events, create shopping lists, or write messages that you may not be good at writing, such as farewell notes or birthday wishes.
If you’re worried about losing Google Assistant features, you may not have much to fret about. Google does say that common Assistant features, such as calls, controlling smart home gadgets, and reminders, will all work with Gemini. There are likely to be a few missing features, but Google claims that it’ll be adding more Assistant features to Gemini in the future. It may be a while before Gemini can fully replace Assistant, but it looks like a new era is about to begin for Google products.