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The 10 inch Google Nest Hub Max, announced at Google IO 2019

Telstra, Google turns on calls to smart speakers, displays

You can already make a phone call out to friends and family using a Google Home or Google Nest with Telstra, but what if someone dials in?

Even though your phone is still called your phone, it doesn’t have to be the one place phone calls are made from, or even to.

Select wearables can take phone calls, distributing the voice capability to your wrist, you can make phone calls from your computer, and if you have an iPhone and either a Mac or an iPad (or both), macOS can connect them up and distribute the phone call to your computer or tablet with no problems. You have options.

And this week, if you’re a Telstra customer with a Google Nest or Google Home device, say a smart speaker or a smart display, you can actually get phone calls to that gadget inside your own home, as Telstra switches on inbound calls to Nest products.

Last year outbound calling was enabled, allowing you to make calls from a Telstra phone number out from some of Google’s smart speakers, and this year people can call into them, once you enable the settings.

To make it happen, you’ll need to be a Telstra customer and own one of the Google Home or Google Nest speakers, and then go into the Google Home app to connect one of six mobile numbers, allowing that gadget to receive calls from a mobile number.

It means that if you have a Google speaker in the kitchen and you get a phone call, you don’t have to go running for the speaker, and can ask Google to answer it simply announcing “Hey Google, answer call”.

Right now, Telstra customers are the only ones in Australia who can try this feature out, as it won’t yet work with customers of other networks.

“We know the addition of inbound call answering will be just as useful and convenient as the outbound feature, and with hundreds of ‘triple zero’ (000) emergency calls made since we launched, it proves how valuable clever and connected devices in the home can be in situations like that,” said Paul Totton, Senior Product Manager for Products and Technology at Telstra.

“We’re currently the only telco in Australia to partner with Google in bringing this clever and new way to connect,” said Totton. “It’s yet another part of our commitment to provide the best network and best technology to help everyone to thrive.”

The Telstra connection to Google Home and Google Nest speakers should be active now.

Google Home Mini

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