Google Home routines: ultimate guide (+ you must try these)

With Google Home routines you can, as it were, combine many commands with one command. This way you can quickly get a lot done in your smart home. You can arrange all this via the free downloadable Google Home app. In this article we explain what the routines are and how they work.

The Google Assistant on the Google Home and Nest speakers is already pretty smart. But with Google Home routines you make the voice assistant a little bit smarter, by telling it very directly what you expect from the service the moment you use a specific command.

Google Home routines
Image: Wesley Akkerman

Using Google Home routines

Of course you can switch everything on and off in the house the moment you wake up or go to sleep. But you can also say a command like ‘Hey Google, good morning’ or ‘Hey Google, sleep well’, after which the Assistant performs a series of circuits in the house.

You determine those circuits yourself. For example, you can switch on the lights in the morning with the command ‘good morning’, switch on the coffee maker and listen to the news. ‘Sleep well’ can then turn off the lights, draw curtains and switch off radios and televisions.

The great thing about the Google Home routines is that you set them all yourself. There are also some standard options available so you can definitely see what they have in store. And if you want, just adjust those options, because chances are they largely do what you want them to do.

Google Home routines
Image: Wesley Akkerman

Manage Google Home routines

To create or adjust Google Home routines yourself, you naturally need the Google Home app. You can download it for free for Android and iOS. Of course you need a Google account for this and you must already have added some devices to your smarthome.

Once that’s all done, tap your own profile picture in the top right corner. A menu will then appear, where you can choose the Settings for the Assistant option. On the next page, scroll down until you get to the Routines heading. That’s the place to be.

Here you can see the existing routines. Tap Good morning to see what happens when you say the command. You will see that several things happen:

  • You hear the weather forecast.
  • The daily schedule is discussed.
  • Any memories will be discussed.
  • The battery percentage of your smartphone is shared
  • The news is playing

You can easily adapt the existing Google Home routines by removing rules or giving them another function. You do this by removing and placing check marks next to the options. For more options, tap the button at the bottom, called Add action.

Google Home routines
Image: Wesley Akkerman

Set up Google Home routines

Fortunately, setting up a Google Home routine yourself, without using the existing options, is very simple. In the menu for the routines you will find a big plus button, at the top right. First you have to give the command a clearly pronounced voice command.

You can also set certain routines to go off automatically, for example at a specific time or during sunset or sunrise. Do you set a voice command yourself? Then make sure to pick something that you don’t forget or pronounce easily. Easy for you and for the Assistant.

Then it is important that you determine what the command does. The app presents many options that speak for themselves. If you still can’t find what you’re looking for, press the Add your own assignments button at the bottom of the page. Then you simply work manually.

In all cases, you should always keep in mind that you choose something that the Google Assistant can actually do. In addition, the devices you want to control must offer support for the Assistant and Google Home. Otherwise they cannot be included in your routines.

Google Home routines
Image: Wesley Akkerman

Google Home routines to try out

As mentioned, there are a number of Google Home routines in the app that you can try right away. Then think of the Good morning routines mentioned earlier. But there is also a Sleep well variant, with which the thermostat is set lower, the lights go out, et cetera.

Then there is another option called Homecoming. When you use that command, the Google Assistant plays certain music that you like. Fill in the options especially within the app, so that you come home to a house in which you really want to come home.

Turn up the heating, run the washing machine, that sort of thing. If you only have enough smart devices in your house, then a lot is possible. With the Departure option you can quickly set everything to go out in the house. Because if you’re not at home, you don’t have to do anything.

Then there’s the On my way to work command. With this option you get information about the weather and traffic. The Assistant also goes through the planning with you and plays that music. This is a bit more convenient for on the road and a bit less handy at home, but still worth mentioning.

On the way home is then a command that largely does the opposite. Just before you start the engine of your car, give this command to the Assistant on your smartphone. You will then again hear various updates, while the heating is also set higher.