Monday, October 19, 2020
Home Science Google Home's unsolicited advice can get annoying. Here's how to politely ask...

Google Home’s unsolicited advice can get annoying. Here’s how to politely ask it to stop – CNET


Google Home smart speakers sometimes bug you to try suggested commands, which many find annoying.

Tyler Lizenby/CNET

Every once in a while, I’ll ask my Google Home ($130 at QVC) for something — the weather forecastsetting a timerhow to spell “antidisestablishmentarianism” — and it answers right away. But then, sometimes, it adds a tip I didn’t ask for, such as, “If you ever want to know what time it is, just ask.” Or, “By the way, if you’d ever like to hear a summary of your day, just say, ‘good morning.”” One tip it’s never had for me, however, is how to keep it from repeating the same descriptions of its features that I’ve already chosen to ignore time and again.

I wish the Google Home had a “brief mode” like the Amazon Echo, which you can set to simply ding when executing certain commands. Instead, the Google Home proudly announces every time it turns off a light. There’s a somewhat tedious workaround on the Google Home for this (you have to create a separate routine for every command you don’t want to hear confirmation on), but there’s nothing on the Google Home support pages about shushing these unwanted suggestions.

Our newsletter sends you the best tips for your Google Home smart speaker.

Thankfully that hasn’t stopped internet denizens from experimenting with several solutions that, anecdotally, at least, seem to do the trick. If your Google Home’s command suggestions grate on your nerves as much as they do mine, here are some things you can do to try to get it to stop.


Google Support pages are frustratingly silent about how to silence unwanted suggestions, but the forums are chock-full of ideas.

Josh Miller/CNET

Try this to keep Google Home tips to a minimum

There’s no official Google Home support document on this topic, so I scoured the internet for homebrewed hacks. A few Google Home users have reported success when they said, “Hey, Google, no thank you,” or, “OK, Google, no thanks,” after the Google Home offered an unwanted suggestion. A few commenters said they didn’t wait for their Google Home to suggest the tip and said the command out of the blue, and it still seemed to work.

When we tried it on various Google Home smart speakers, the responses varied. To “Hey, Google, no thank you,” one responded, “My pleasure.” Another responded, “Sorry, I don’t understand.” 

In response to “no thanks,” it said, “No received.” It isn’t clear if this worked.

Google Home Mini

Fiddling with the Google Home app reportedly helps, so I tried that too.

James Martin/CNET

A software hack you could try, too

One commenter on a Google Home support forum suggested going into the Google Home App and changing one action in one routine, then save it after you tell Google Home, “No, thanks.” 

I could see how that might trigger an end to the suggestions about routines, at least, so I tried it by changing my “Good Morning” routine so it now sets my Nest Learning Thermostat to 72 instead of 70, then saved it, just in case making a change might help my preference stick. Again, it’s only been two days, but so far no extra tips.

Don’t bother trying to do these things 

Other Google Home owners have reportedly tried all sorts of things that definitely didn’t work for them. Here are some commands that don’t seem to stop the unwanted tips:

  • “Stop telling me about routines!” (Google Home says it’s sorry, it doesn’t know how to help with that.)

  • Restoring the device to factory settings (this could actually make it worse).

  • Complaining to Google Home support about it.

If you’ve never automated a series of Google Home actions before, here’s a good guide to getting started with routines. And if you have other pet peeves with Google Home (I sure do), here are some workarounds for my top three aggravations, plus two solutions to my biggest Google Home annoyance of all.

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