Google is rolling out an update to its search app for Android that lets you use “OK, Google” to start a search, set a reminder, or perform other actions from any screen on your phone.

Up until now you could only do this while you were on the home screen.

ok google now

Droid Life reports that Google Search 3.5.14 is the first version of Google’s search app for Android with OK, Google everywhere support. Note that it’ll only work if you have Google Play Services 5.0 which is rolling out to users now.

Update: Google says the feature works from within any app that’s not already using your microphone as long as the screen is on or your device is charging. You can turn on the feature by going to Google Settings, choosing Search & Now, then Voice, then checking the “From any screen” option under “OK Google.

Most phones will still need to be active to use the feature — the Motorola Moto X is still one of the only phones that you can talk to while the screen is off (well, you can talk to any phone, just don’t expect a response from most).

The new Search app also includes audio history, letting Google use a history of your voice searches to offer customized voice prediction. Once Google gets a good idea of what your voice sounds like, it’ll do an even better job of recognizing words you say aloud.

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6 replies on “Google Search for Android adds “OK, Google” support everywhere”

  1. Also made this comment on OP but I just got this update on my nexus 4 and no joy on OK Google everywhere. The option doesn’t even appear in the settings. Looks like the feature is limited to specific models.

    1. It could be down to the country settings- “OK Google” originally only worked in US English. Not sure if that’s still the case.

  2. Got to admit, the voice demos they had during the keynote were pretty impressive when it comes to accuracy. Whole sentences transcribed correctly.

    Also, it’s nice to see them using context well. One example had the guy asking “When does the XYZ museum close?” After getting the answer, he just said “Take me there.” and Google Maps popped up with the directions.

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