Google Assistant finally works with some third-party apps

You could also ask your phone to “search cross stitch baby yodas on Etsy” or “lace up my Nike Adapts” if you have the shoes and companion app. The self-lacing shoes will start tightening without you having to first hunt for the app and then selecting the right option. 

The feature rolls out today for all Assistant-enabled Android phones, and works with apps like Twitter, Snapchat, MyFitnessPal, Discord, Nike Run Club and more. You can ask Assistant to order a sandwich on Postmates, show “Ask me anything” on Reddit or check your accounts on Mint, for example, but you can also do more. Say “Hey Google, my shortcuts,” and you’ll be shown a list of commands you can use. You can also set up personalized queries on this page.

Not only does this new capability make Assistant a much more powerful digital helper, it also makes hands-free navigation easier. This could come in handy when your hands are full or you don’t want to touch your phone, but it could also help those who are visually impaired or are suffering from arthritis, offering them an alternative way to interact with their apps.