Saturday, April 29, 2017

Google Home - Having Troubles?

Much has been made of the recent upgrade to Google Home that included support for multiple users, differentiating each user's voice and associating it with their own Google account. The Internet became almost immediately flooded with blogs and posts talking about how to set up this great new feature, and how simple it was to set up - except when it isn't.

Welcome to a family that "isn't."

Most instructions will simply tell you to download or update the Google Home app and look for a blue bar across the "device card" for your Home device that says "Multi-user now available." Only trouble for me was that, no matter what device I tried, there was no blue bar. Tried to get my son, wife, and daughter to set up - all to no avail. After Googling for the better part of an evening to find what had to be a fairly common problem, and coming up with hit after hit telling me how easy it would be to set up, I finally got to a page that relayed a Google Home support number..

..and after over an hour with a script kiddie tech support person helping me and frustrating my son to the point where he finally gave up for the evening, two full iterations of breaking and re-linking my Google account to Google Home, rebooting my phone and tablet at least once each, I finally stumbled onto the solution that gave me the "Multi-user" bar - I had to update Google services *in addition* to Google Home. On each problematic device I tried wherein the "Multi-user" bar was not appearing, I updated the base "Google Services" app; each time, that solved the problem. I didn't see this on any tech blogs out there, so I figured I'd toss it out there and hopefully prevent someone else from going through a frustrating evening trying to get their Google Home set up for multiple users.

You'd think that the installer for Google Home might actually take note of the dependency at install time and let the user know there's an out-of-date component on the device. Why does it make me want to say, "Hey Google - Fix the installer!"


Happy Googling.