Most Android smartphones feature three physical buttons: volume up, volume down and power. However, LG’s upcoming flagship smartphone is expected to have a fourth button. According to Engadget, the LG G7 will feature a dedicated button for Google Assistant. Located on the side, users can press this button to immediately access Google’s voice-controlled digital assistant.
Even without a physical button, Android users can still access Google Assistant if their device is running Android 5.0 or higher. To enable this feature, users must tap Settings > Google Assistant > Turn on. Once enabled, users can say “Ok, Google” or press and hold the Home button for three seconds to begin a command. Among other things, Google Assistant can provide information on the weather, nearby restaurants, directions, traffic, flights and more. It even allows users to send text messages using their voice.
But a physical button for Google Assistant will likely simplify the process of making commands. Rather than talking or holding the Home button, users can press the G7’s Google Assistant button. Being that the button is located on the G7’s side, it shouldn’t interfere with other operations like controlling the volume or using the touchscreen display.
In addition to a Google Assistant button, the G7 is also expected to feature a fingerprint reader. Biometrics has become an increasingly popular feature in smartphones. It allows users to unlock their handsets without a password, which far too many users forget. The fingerprint reader on the G7 will scan the user’s fingerprint to ensure that it matches with the stored image. Even if the user forgets their password, he or she can unlock their device using the fingerprint reader.
Currently, there are no Android smartphones that feature a physical Google Assistant button. Samsung has implemented a physical button for its digital assistant, Bixby, in several handsets, but neither it nor any other manufacturer has included a button for Google Assistant. Assuming these reports are true, the LG G7 will be the first Android smartphone to feature a physical Google Assistant button.
LG hasn’t officially announced the G7, but reports suggest that the South Korean tech company will unveil the new handset during an event in May.