If you have ever dealt with commercial calls — or just annoying calls of any type — you will love the new Google Screen Call, a Pixel 3-only service that takes calls from numbers you don’t know so you don’t have to do it yourself.
It is simply amazing. YouTuber Tim Schofield put it to the test and made this video showing how it all works.
It’s pretty simple. When you get a call you get a notification banner that gives you the option to answer, hang up or screen the call. If you select screen, Google’s assistant will answer the call, announcing there’s nobody available and offering to take the call.
From there, Google Screen Call will automatically transcribe whatever the caller is saying in real time, without you listening to their babbling. As you see what they are saying, Google Screen call offers you with options to steer the conversation. There’s “Tell me more”, “Who is this?”, and “I can’t understand”, along with a button to directly report the call as spam — which will hang up the call immediately, blocking it I presume.
There’s two buttons to say “Call me back” or “I’ll call you back”, which will hang up after the assistant delivers the message. You can also pick up the call in the middle of it or just hang up straight away, which will prompt the AI to say good bye and hang up.
The service is available only on the new Pixel 3 for now, but I can imagine it will make its way to other Android phones via Google Assistant. And I’m Apple will release its own version because, well, it would be dumb not to do so.
The only thing missing? A fully automated, AI-powered troll mode that drives phone marketers mad on the line for an hour. One can dream.
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Jesus Diaz founded the new Sploid for Gawker Media after seven years working at Gizmodo, where he helmed the lost-in-a-bar iPhone 4 story and wrote old angry man rants, among other things. He's a creative director, screenwriter, and producer at The Magic Sauce, and currently writes for Fast Company and Tom's Guide.