The recently-launched Google Pixel 6 has an interesting feature called Quick Phrases, which lets you belt out simple Assistant commands without saying “Hey Google” first. Google is now bringing this feature to Nest smart speakers and displays, starting with a “stop” command that lets you quickly tell Google Assistant to shut up.
This feature is long overdue. Google Assistant loves to give long, drawn out answers to simple questions, and it often shares fun facts that nobody asked for. Users no longer have to say “Hey Google, stop” to dismiss these rants—a simple “stop” will now suffice.
📣 Helpful new Google Assistant feature alert! Want your smart display or speaker to stop talking? Just say “stop” — no #HeyGoogle needed.
— Google (@Google) January 25, 2022
Does this mean that Google is listening to you all the time? No, Google Assistant still looks for keywords before it logs any commands or requests. You can test this for yourself—Google Assistant won’t stop talking if you say “shut up” or a similar command, as it’s only listening for “stop” or “Hey Google.” (You can view and delete your Google Assistant recordings at any time, by the way.)
Now, to some people, this feature may not sound all that new. That’s because Google Assistant already listens for “stop” commands when playing alarms. We’re not sure why it took Google so long to expand this feature outside of the alarm system.
All Nest speakers and smart displays should automatically gain the quick “stop” command through a server-side update. You don’t need to enable any settings to get this feature working. That said, the simple “stop” command doesn’t seem to work on third-party Google Assistant devices, such as Klipsch speakers or smart TVs.