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Why can't Google Assistant be installed on a tablet?

AndroidPIT Google assistant 9262
© nextpit

Google Assistant is now available on a wide range of smartphones, with more scheduled to receive it in the weeks ahead. There have already been some complaints about another problem: the app will not be available for tablets.

In theory, tablets could have potential…

I don’t need to tell you that there are many types of tablets, some of which are specifically aimed at people who use them on the go and others for more sedentary users (generally tablets measuring around 10-inches or more). The latter category is the most popular one, which explains why tablets are replacing computers in many areas.

Google Assistant fulfills several functions, such as managing your calendar to managing your home appliances. For it to work well, it has to know as much as possible about you: your habits, your preferences, etc. A tablet would enable Google Assistant to source a lot of information on you and see which items you use the most often at home (for example, electricity). Additionally, you will have configured your accounts so it can always access information and perform tasks for you.

AndroidPIT google assistant 5
Google Assistant is here to help you. © NextPit

... But it’s not enough in practice

Google Assistant wants to know more about you so it can help you. With your phone, it can access your contacts (not everyone has their telephone contacts in their tablet) as well as your GPS history/journeys. This is much harder with a tablet as, not only does the tablet need 4G but you would then have to take it with you everywhere.

In terms of business, Google is obviously aiming for as many people as possible to use their products. Smartphones are (much) more popular and mobile than a tablet, so it's better suit for this purpose. Of course, Google could be present on both devices by offering a smartphone and tablet service, but it hasn’t done that - for now, anyway. Google has confirmed to Android Police that their Assistant will not be available on tablet, but that could change with time.

Perhaps there is a technical explanation, but these haven't been discussed (as far as I know).

In short, Google wants to offer their service to as many people as possible and to make the service as efficient as possible. Tablets don’t serve that purpose. Samsung’s artificial intelligence, Bixby, will be an interesting alternative to Google Assistant when it comes out, but Bixby will only available on current and future Samsung devices for now.

Have you installed Google Assistant on your smartphone yet? Would you install it on your tablet if it was available? Let us know in the comments below.

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Benoit Pepicq

Benoit Pepicq

Benoit is passionate about new technologies and everything related to computers. A big Android fan since 2011, he joined the AndroidPIT team to satisfy his passion and to share his knowledge on Android with readers.

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  • Muana Pachuau 2
    Muana Pachuau Jun 23, 2017 Link to comment

    I use my iball nimble 4or evething. Hello? Google? its still an android device? make sense? Why I've always prefered android instead of apple is because of google and the joy you brought to millions, I always thought you were the people's champ. Now you are turning into apple...

    I do hope that in the near future, google will change their minds. I want my google back... not this apple wannabe.

    Tara Vann

  • 1
    Bruce Marden (Tech-Pros) Apr 6, 2017 Link to comment

    This is disappointing and very dumb on Google's part. I have been a Apple phone user but I am currently evaluating if I should switch to Android. Historically my main reason for sticking with Apple is Siri and voice recognition, but I hear Google Assistant has improved greatly. Hey, I'll test the Google Assistant on my Samsung Galaxy Tab S...Not...

    Dumb, dumb, dumb...

    iPhone 8 it will be then.

    • Jason Lilli 1
      Jason Lilli Apr 26, 2017 Link to comment

      Are you serious? I have to use iPhone for work and by extension, Apple carplay which sucks. Siri has been so far behind google's assistant for so long, I can't even remember. They've actually improved Siri a bit to attempt to mirror google, but it is still so much worse it's not funny. I'm currently buying a cheap Android track phone just to use Android Auto in my new ride vs. Apple carplay lol. But to the point of your post, I really can't remember the last time Siri was able to outperform Google.

  • 28
    itprolonden Mar 29, 2017 Link to comment

    Maybe it has to be always connected?

  • 1
    kenneth debergh Mar 28, 2017 Link to comment

    I have an android tablet and could use the assistant on it. I have it on my phone and it is helpful.I like to have my phone and tablet(I use as home computer and on the road via hotspot)both run the same apps

  • 1
    fred flux Mar 28, 2017 Link to comment

    works on the new Lenovo Yoga Book i just picked up. not sure if that is a tablet exactly but it does pretty much work as a tablet proper.

  • 6
    Phil Lettieri Mar 28, 2017 Link to comment

    For me, my sedentary Pixel C is the real work-horse and Google could easily glean more information about me from it rather than my phone. It seems to me that they monitor all my devices, anyway, so why not just give Assistant to the device with the most information.

  • 12
    Ellett Mar 28, 2017 Link to comment

    I agree that the theories mentioned in this article don't make much sense, but neither do I subscribe to the tin foil hat theory that Google is doing this to force you to buy a Google Home. Google doesn't make its money selling Homes. It makes its money serving you ads. It doesn't serve ads on a Home but it does serve ads on a tablet. So financially Google would prefer that you interact with a tablet as opposed to a Home.

    Google can serve ads better the more it knows about you. Having a Google Home provides the opportunity for more Google interactions when you may not have a phone, tablet, notebook or desktop convenient, like when you're cooking, working in the shop or getting ready for a shower. So It's not a zero-sum game of tablet or Home. For Google learning about you it's additive, tablet AND Home AND phone AND Chromebook AND... the more interactions the better.


    • Adam Olenoski 1
      Adam Olenoski Sep 22, 2017 Link to comment

      This. Amazon recently released the Echo Show. Putting Assistant on tablets not only allows Google to satisfy Android tablet users, but can turn any tablet into a Google-enabled challenger to the Show - and take on the ever-growing smart home market with a portable control center that outclasses the competition AND brings Google's visual-based ads to smart homes.

  • Alvin Williamson 4
    Alvin Williamson Mar 27, 2017 Link to comment

    Google Assistant works on my old Galaxy Tab 3. It's rooted however. Running Android 7.1.1...

  • Aric Wilisch 1
    Aric Wilisch Mar 27, 2017 Link to comment

    If Google is passing out Google Now they are going to have to put it in tablets eventually. Plus it doesn't really make sense not to. Most people who have a tablet have a phone so the data is already there. If a they have is a tablet then why would they want to miss out on the data just because it's not as good as if it was in a phone? I think eventually they are going to have to do it, might as well get it over with.

  • Albin Foro 30
    Albin Foro Mar 27, 2017 Link to comment

    I know Google just wants to be helpful by knowing all about me but so do some unpleasantly clingy people I've known. One simply decides whether the relationship is wanted. Not installed on my phone. A 7" tablet is my main at-home Android device, with the phone on the shelf, but still would not change my mind.

    Google must be thinking that any subscriber with a tablet also has a phone nearby, so for its own information-compiling and sales purposes the tablets are redundant. Google is apparently not prioritizing the usefulness of the service for tablet users, only whether or not it's getting the data it wants from them by other means.

  • Reggie Taylor 1
    Reggie Taylor Mar 27, 2017 Link to comment

    Yes I need it on my Galaxy Tab S2!!

  • Brittany McGhee 21
    Brittany McGhee Mar 27, 2017 Link to comment

    Give the people what they want, Google! Bring Assistant to tablets!

    Robert Johnson

    • 22
      ljhaye Mar 27, 2017 Link to comment

      But is that what people want? Android community doesn't even buy android tablets and google doesn't even pay attention to that market anymore.

  • Eric Sunshine 2
    Eric Sunshine Mar 27, 2017 Link to comment

    It's the same with Signal. It won't install on a tablet "because it isn't compatible", but you can sideload it and it runs fine, even on a landfill tablet without mobile telephony.


    Robert Johnson

  • Ronald Sisler 2
    Ronald Sisler Mar 27, 2017 Link to comment

    This is rediculous... I carry my 10.1 Lenovo tablet everywhere I go, I have all my contacts, schedule, and every information that I need with me on my tablet.... I see no reason for Google not to put assistant on it!!!! It's even a phone!!!!WHY GOOGLE!!! PLEASE GIVE ME ASSISTANT!!!!

    Robert Johnson

  • Solo Ripper 2
    Solo Ripper Mar 27, 2017 Link to comment

    I had assistant on my Shield tablet. It makes no sense to limit it to phones only. That only leads to failure.

    Robert Johnson

  • CHILL iAM 2
    CHILL iAM Mar 27, 2017 Link to comment

    But Tablets have Google Now (on Tap) So it makes all the sense in the world that the my Tablet is up graded to the Assistant 😕

    Robert Johnson

  • Christopher Davis 2
    Christopher Davis Mar 27, 2017 Link to comment

    I have a Huawei MediaPad M3 and I have Google Assistant on it. Completely stock.

    MIKA Martin

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