Most modern Android smartphones allow you to access the Google Assistant simply by saying “Ok Google” or “Hey Google”. Much like you can say “Hey Siri” on an Apple iPhone.
This is a very handy feature. For example, you can make phone calls or open certain applications while your hands are busy with something else, such as driving.
Sometimes, often after updating watch apps or Android version, OK Google just stops working. This can be a real problem if you use a function a lot, but figuring out why it no longer works is not easy. So, if your phone suddenly stops hearing you, here’s how to figure it out.
Troubleshooting OK Google
While we may think that OK Google and Google Assistant are inextricably linked, you can still use OK Google on devices that don’t support Google Assistant. The steps to ensure that OK Google is turned on correctly varies depending on whether your device has an assistant or not. So the first thing you need to do is confirm it.
So how do you know if a given device has an assistant? It’s actually pretty simple. All you have to do is hold down the Home button and see what happens. If you see a pop-up window asking “How can I help?” Then the Assistant is present and fixing.
You may also be prompted to turn on the assistant, in which case you should definitely do so. In any of these cases, you will follow the instructions in the presence of an assistant. Let’s start with a simpler one – for phones without an assistant.
Ensure that Google runs devices without the assistant
On devices that do not support Google Assistant, you must use the Google app to activate this feature.
First open the Google app. It’s literally an app on your phone called “Google”. Now tap the hamburger menu icon, then Settings Voice Voice Match.
There should be an option called “Access with Voice Match”. Turn it on to make OK Google work.
Ensure that Google runs devices with the assistant
If your device has Google Assistant, you can easily enable voice mapping.
First, press and hold the Home button. This will bring up Google Assistant. There is a small icon in the bottom left corner of the pop-up window that looks a bit like a letterbox from which the sun’s rays are coming out. This is the one:
Tap this icon and the Assistant will expand to fill the entire screen. Now click on your profile picture and then click on Settings.
On this screen, tap “Assistant”.
At the bottom of the screen, under Assistant Devices, click on your device.
All you need to do now is turn on Access with Voice Match.
Check for updates
It looks like OK Google may stop working in some cases due to pending updates. If your phone hasn’t connected to Wi-Fi for some time, you may have missed some updates.
Therefore, be sure to update Google apps through the Play Store and install any OS updates that may also be delayed. If any of the components don’t work because of this, everything should return to normal.
Google retrain your voice
If OK Google has already been enabled but still doesn’t work, you may need to retrain the system for your voice. It only takes a few seconds and assumes that you say a few phrases so the program can find out how you sound.
Perhaps your microphone is not working as it used to, your voice may have changed slightly, or something else has made the model inaccurate.
To do this, go to the same settings page where you turned on voice matching above.
Now click on “voice model” and then “retrain voice model”. Now just follow the instructions.
Disable competing applications
Google’s software is always listening to catch you when you say “Ok Google,” but there are other applications that could potentially interfere with its ability to do so. If you have intensive, resource-intensive apps running in the background, turning them off can improve OK Google performance. After all, sometimes he just reacts slowly.
If OK, Google stopped working after updating or installing another app, that might also be a hint. You can disable or temporarily uninstall other apps that listen to voice input, or have been updated or installed since your problem occurred.
Clean your microphone
This is a relatively long shot, but you might have problems with the Ok Google team because something is interfering with your microphone. The microphone hole on modern phones is tiny, so oil and debris from your skin can clog it.
Using an earphone, gently clean the microphone hole to see if it improves the situation. This may not be the point, but if you’ve tried everything else, it doesn’t hurt!
Take back your voice
Hopefully, after you have followed this troubleshooting checklist, your OK Google iteration is working as expected. This is a good thing as our voice assistants are becoming more and more indispensable when it comes to a busy day. At the very least, you always have someone ready to listen to your needs.