So is it just me or has Google Assistant / Nest been absolutely horrible today?

It started sometime yesterday – I managed to miss the great Google Outage of 2020 because I got to sleep at 6am, and was trying to slog along at 9 with work, which strangely had nothing to do with IT yesterday… but when I found out about the outage I also found out that something strange had happened to my home.

I’ve got 10 smart bulbs in my basement and three not smart lights. I go down there and ask for the basement to turn on, bam, it’s no longer a place to hold kidnapped victims, it’s a place where I can actually work and see the tools and washing machine and all the things. I also have it set to auto turn those lights off if I forget so there’s that.

Last night I asked my usual request as I ventured down into the deep dank abyss listening to the moans of the latest batch in the basement… what I got back when I requested my basement (10 lights) be turned on was that 5 of those lights did not support that functionality.

All 10 lights turned on. I thought perhaps this had something to do with color so I asked it to set the basement lights red, and 8 out of the 10 did (two are on plugs, not color lights) no complaints. Huh.

Turning off all lights via a Google Home Hub, Insignia, or the Assistant on my phone similarly everything worked, but it threw up an error that five of the lights didn’t support that functionality.

So the lights in the basement are throwing errors and working perfectly, but I discovered the lights elsewhere are not. Turning on and off the master bedroom lights causes no issues, but turning off everything in the master bedroom throws a similar error and also works perfectly.

I opened up a support with Google’s Twitter and we’ve been going through some steps to try and get things working but as I was doing a simple test all of my Assistant-enabled anything stopped working. Google Home Hub would translate what I was saying and ignore me, Assistant on my phone similar, Insignia in the basement listened and didn’t do anything. Basically for 10 minute or so I was living with a Google that was doing nothing.

I was then able to ask Assistant to play something and it went to the Vizio in my bedroom, but I was unable to turn it off, or change anything by asking Google to turn off the Vizio.

So yeah, not been a great day with Assistant. How’s yours going?

(as a note, please realize I am in IT and I test smart product for a livering, this is what I do, this is not a series of complaints it’s a diagnostic I’m running)

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Paul E King

Paul King started with GoodAndEVO in 2011, which merged with Pocketables, and as of 2018 he's evidently the owner. He lives in Nashville, works at a film production company, is married with two kids. Facebook | Twitter | Donate | More posts by Paul | Subscribe to Paul's posts