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Google Assistant smart displays are getting dark mode and multiple account support

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Google is updating the look and functionality of the software on its Assistant smart displays in a significant way. Starting this week, smart displays such as the Nest Hub and those made by third-party companies will be updated with a new home screen experience: dark mode, and finally, the ability to see calendar events from more than one Google account.

The biggest change is the new home screen, which is designed to provide contextual information to you depending on your habits and the time of day. Instead of the endlessly scrolling horizontal list of before, Google now divides the information into five distinct sections — time of day, Home Control, Media, Communicate, and Discover — accessible from tabs at the top of the screen.

The time of day tab will change its title depending on when you’re looking at it (i.e. Your Morning, Your Afternoon, Your Evening, etc.) and it will present various cards of information that Google deems important to you at that time. That can include tappable tiles for playing music, news reports, controlling specific smart home devices, and so on. Google says that the tiles displayed on each screen have dynamic sizes depending on their importance. The media page will have larger tiles to include information about what’s playing and controls below it, for example.

Another neat trick of the media tab is the ability to see what’s playing on other Assistant speakers and displays throughout the home and control those, as well. Google says that it will include deep linked tabs in this section, so instead of just opening Disney Plus, you can jump right back to the show you were watching the last time you used Disney Plus.

The Home Control tab is where all of the smart home controls reside, while the Discover tab is basically a place for Google to advertise new features or content to you, based on your search history and usage patterns.

The first screen is contextual based on your habits and the time of day.
Image: Google

What isn’t changing here is the primary screen that shows up when you’re not interacting with the smart display. That remains a slideshow of photos or a static clock, depending on your preferences. I’d have loved to see the option to make it an always-on smart home dashboard displaying weather, calendar, smart home controls, and camera feeds in one place at a glance.

In addition to the new interface, Google is also adding a dark mode that will turn on automatically depending on time of day, the room’s ambient light, or that can be manually selected. A new sunrise alarm will gradually increase the brightness of the screen and the volume of your alarm to make it easier to wake up in the morning.

You will now be able to access calendar entries from multiple Google accounts at the same time.
Photo: Google

Finally, Google is adding one of the most requested features since the Assistant smart displays first came out: the ability to see information from both a personal and work Google account at the same time. Right now, this is limited to calendar appointments, and Google says you can connect up to five different Google Meet accounts on a single display and switch between them at will. In addition, Google Meet is getting the auto-framing features that have been available with Duo on the Nest Hub Max since its launch, as well as the ability to switch between different grid views when on a call.

Taken as a whole, these updates show Google investing more in the touch-based experience on the smart displays. While the company tells me it still views these products as voice-first, and still sees a lot of voice interactions on them, it is adding these updates to improve the experience for when you’re not five or more feet away from the device. It’s almost as if the smart display is starting to become a real computing interface, as opposed to an ambient screen that gets called upon to play music or show some information when requested by a voice command.

It’s also an extension of what Google is doing with the recently announced Google TV software on the new Google Chromecast, by collating all of your activity across its various services and presenting you with content recommendations based on that. Google says the new software will begin rolling out to Assistant smart displays this week, though it may take some time to reach all of them.

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Charge Your Phone Wirelessly With 50% off a Multifunctional LED Lamp

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Best Tech DealsBest Tech DealsThe best tech deals from around the web, updated daily.

White Wireless Charge Lamp | $18 | Amazon | Clip coupon + code ABC88699
Black Wireless Charger Lamp | $20 | Amazon | Promo code ABC88699

When you’re ready to turn in for the night, you don’t want to forget to charge your phone— especially if your mobile device doubles as your alarm clock.

With this wireless charger lamp, you can make this crucial step of your nightly routine even easier by just setting your phone on the wireless charging pad and… well, that’s all there is to it!

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Other functions include multiple lighting modes as well as a sleep timer option for auto shut-off of the light after 30 or 60 minutes.

This lamp can be yours in white for $18 if you clip the coupon on Amazon (it’s below the original $40 price) and add promo code ABC88699 at checkout.

You can snag the black version for $20 using the same code—no coupon though, sorry.

Don’t sleep on this deal! Who knows how long stock or the coupon code will last?

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Keep That Hotdish Hot With 65% Off a Luncia Casserole Carrier, Only $11 With Promo Code

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Luncia Double-Decker Dish Carrier | $11 | Amazon | Promo code SDDU9S7F

It has been a long time since the days we could safely have a potluck or other gatherings, but we have a fantastic deal perfect for once those times return. These double-decker Luncia dish carriers can be had for 65% off when you add promo code SDDU9S7F at checkout and clip the coupon on the site (it’s just below the price). These holders fit 9″x 13″ sized baking dishes.

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That means you can insulate and keep two dishes of food warm for only $11 instead of $30. What’s more, your Luncia carrier will arrive by Christmas if you order today as a Prime member.

Just add promo code SDDU9S7F and clip the 5% off coupon to bring the price down to $11 for the blue or the grey option.

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Grab this offer while it’s still around!


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Conquer Your Pup’s Dander and Fur With $700 Off a Cobalt or Charcoal Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Cobalt) | $200 | Best Buy

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Charcoal) | $200 | Best Buy

Allergies can be bad enough as the seasons change. Don’t let pet hair and dander add to that by vacuuming it up early and often. That chore is easier said than done— unless you have a robot vacuum to do the work for you. This lovely bright cobalt Bobsweep PetHair Plus robot vacuum and mop, only $200 today at Best Buy seems like an ideal option. That’s a whopping $700 off, by the way.

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You can get the same deal for the charcoal version of the robot vac, too. This model is not only specially made for picking up pet hair, it self docks and charges when it’s finished with the work.

It also comes with a mop attachment, so it can take care of those kitchen floors for you as well. Grab it while it’s still available for this fantastic price!

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