Google Assistant Routines realize their full potential with customization and scheduling

Google Assistant Routines can be pretty much whatever you want them to be. Your custom routines, your words, your choice of actions, go crazy with your ideas and make your Home function the way you want.

Google Assistant routines realize their potential with full customization. Simply say one customizable command and your Google Assistant will do multiple things like play music, control your smart home and get a daily briefing.

Routines are a sequence of related commands that are launched with a simple phrase. Each routine focuses on a transition point that occurs during a typical day, and includes a varied list of commands that can be tuned to the user’s needs. As an example, here’s how a Routine can start your day.

Say “Hey Google, good morning”, and the Assistant can:

  • Take your phone off silent (only when initiated via an Android device).
  • Adjust lights, plugs, thermostats, start the coffee maker and more.
  • Tell you about the weather and how your commute looks.
  • Tell you what’s on your calendar and give you reminders.
  • Adjust the volume on your smart speaker and play music, news, a radio station, pick up a podcast where you let off or do nothing.

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Routines are probably one of the best features of Google Assistant. Whether it’s waking up to a fully illuminated room with the news playing in the background or detailing your list of reminders as soon as you walk through the door at night, Routines can do it all. Initially, Google launched six ready-made Routines to help you get multiple things done with a single command.

  • Good morning,
  • Bedtime,
  • Leaving home,
  • I’m home,
  • Commuting to work and
  • Commuting home.

With Assistant Custom Routines, which allow you to create your own Routine with any of the Google Assistant’s one million Actions, and start your routine with a phrase that feels best for you. You can add any element to any routine that you’d like, and you can customize the phrase that triggers it. For example, you can create a Custom Routine for family dinner, and kick it off by saying

  • Hey Google, dinner’s ready

and the Assistant can turn on your favorite music, turn off the TV, and broadcast “dinner time!” to everyone in the house. or Just say

  • Hey Google, good night

and the Assistant will shut down your lights and start playing some nature sounds to soothe you into deep sleep.

You’re also able to schedule Routines for a specific day or time either using the Assistant app or through the Google Clock app for Android to trigger automatically at certain times or as a response to certain apps like Google Clock. Handily, the clock app won’t trigger your morning routine if you hit snooze, just once you actually turn it off. You’ll also be to able to add third-party elements to Routines such as reading a to-do list or playing meditation music. And with that, even the Clock app offers an AI-based tool.

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Here’s how to create custom Assistant Routines:

  1. Open the Google Home app.
  2. Tap Settings -> Routines -> +.
  3. Under “When…”

a. Tap Add commands -> + -> enter the phrase you want to say to trigger the Routine -> Ok.

b. Tap <-.

c. You can also set a time and day.

6. Under “ My Assistant should…”

a. Tap Add action -> Enter what the Assistant should do. You can enter any Google Assistant command or choose from popular actions -> Add. Note: You can’t assign multiple voice queries to an action.

7. [Optional] Under “And then play…”

  • Tap Add media.
  • Tap the circle next to the media source. Note: You can customize what plays by tapping next to the source.
  • Tap Add.

How to program a delay the start of Assistant Routines?

Google Assistant Routines are one of the best ways to automate the smallest tasks in your daily life. Now Google has some new time controls in the works, as options for adding delays to each command.

Custom routines are about to get a whole lot more flexible with your schedule. A new category of ‘Time adjustments’ appears when creating a custom routine(not in pre-built routines). ‘Delay start’ option lets you to delay a list of commands, with a built-in setting for countdown. Delays can be set as low as one minute, with users able to drag the “after [x] minute/hour” card when in the timeline view. This can be accessed from both the Google Home app and Assistant settings.
More flexibility for when commands are triggered seems like an excellent way to add new controls to Routines.

Google Home Scheduled Routines take it to next level

Google Assistant can also do things for you, automatically at a scheduled time.

When Google introduced routines to Assistant, scheduled routines add a new level of power to the smart home system. Instead of having to fire off commands 1-by-1 to complete a series of tasks, you could do many with just one series of words.

While custom routine lets you trigger multiple commands with a single custom phrase — like saying “Hey Google, I’m awake” to unsilence your phone, turn on the lights and read the news. Scheduled routines, meanwhile, could trigger a series of commands at a specific time on specific days, without you needing to say a thing.

To make a schedule:

Open the Google Home app

Go to Settings>Routines

Create a new routine with the + button

Scroll to the “Set a time and day” option to schedule things ahead of time

Afterwards, users are asked to “Choose which speaker will start it.” There is also a toggle to “Get notified on your phone when it starts” with an Assistant notification.

Want your bedroom lights to turn on every morning at 7 am on workdays? You can do that. Want that song from the Diplo to play every day at noon to get you over the hump and/or drive your roommates up a wall? Sure! Want to double-check the door lock, dim the downstairs lights and make sure your entertainment center is off at 2 am? If you’ve got all the smart home hardware required, it should be able to handle it.

While a lot of things you might use Google Assistant for can already be scheduled through their respective third-party apps (most smart lights, for example, have apps with built-in scheduling options), this moves to bring everything under one roof while letting you fire off more complicated sequences all at once. And if something breaks? You’ll know where to look.

At last, Google Assistant Routines can now be pretty much whatever you want them to be. Google Assistant routines are an easy way to automate your home. They’re an easy way to make your smart home devices play nicely together. Alexa has had customizable commands for a while. But, third-party integration could mean Google Assistant Routines will get a few tricks that could soon force Alexa to play catch-up.

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Google Assistant Routines are available in English in the UK, Canada, Australia, Germany and India.

For more details, on how Google Assistant Routines make it easier to automate your home, how to create custom Routines, and how Google Clock app will work with routines, visit: https://medium.com/@deepak/google-assistant-custom-and-scheduled-routines-d76cf4930091

What areas you would like us to focus upon, let us know in the comments below.


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16 thoughts on “Google Assistant Routines realize their full potential with customization and scheduling

Add yours


  1. Sadly it did not. It seems like “good bye” is a predefined phrase that makes assistant just reply with a random quip like “see you later!”

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  2. Thank you. Yes I added it but it seems to be a “reserved phrase” for some odd reason. I’ll try what you suggest and removing it and adding it again.

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  3. Is anyone else having problems with the “good bye” routine? It’s not working for me at all. Assistant just says “good bye” in response and ignores my routine.

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  4. Barry Smallwood Savings for what support ?


    Most Google users use free services as entertainment. Those users are what Google sells, not customers it needs to support, just not lose. Business and education customers get paid-for “Support” , free ones get low cost packaged “support” and self support.


    Most of the support for Google’s free stuff now is by unpaid volunteers. Google doesnt even publically detail the changes they make in each release of Chrome/ChromeOS, but refers to development logs. Google’s free support is pretty much limited to stalking their “Help” web pages of what they care about at the moment, and if a user dwells long enough on one of those pages, offering a chat with what I’m starting to suspect is AI.


    Google’s customer support budget can be compared to what Elon Musks companies pay for PR and advertising – next to nothing. It almost all goes to those who have paid or are lined up with money in hand to pay for something. Google sells advertising. Unpaid service users are the product, not its customers. You improve its income whenever you spend time here. Whether it’s to enjoy or to complain. You are a monitored “Neilsen-type” family.


    Google is the cheapest entertainment available, and provides some good stuff to keep most of its herd of cash cows and sheep fat and happy most of thr time.


    Once you accept that, and concentrate on making the best out of the bread and circuses available to you from Google, you will be less unhappy.

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  5. Peter lerette im not comparing with how others carry on im just suggesting that google have a page for each country showing what functions are available ….considering how much profit google makes it wouldn’t take many resources to have a ” whats available in your country” page in google support …..the savings on asking google support inquires would offset the extra effort

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  6. This is no different than what Japan does with exports, satisfying the local demand first. I would think that given the buggy nature of first releases, that those not in the US would be hsppy to NOT be used as Google’s guinea pigs.

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  7. as usual these functions are now available in the us and as i keep pointing out when implemented in other countries the time taken is so long that in my case by the time this happens i have forgotten what is available …..there needs to be country specific help pages to allow other countries to use them …..i resent the fact that the anouncements of new functions are UScentric

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