Gemini Live: Google's first look at natural AI conversations on Android

Gemini Live: Google first look at natural AI conversations on Android
Gemini on Android will be getting a ton of updates in the coming months, and one of the new experiences that were showcased at Google I/O today was "Gemini Live." Live is a new way to talk to the AI on your phone, which uses specialized speech technology to make talking to the AI seem natural and easy.

During a live demo at the Google I/O conference, we were treated to a conversation between a Google Product Expert and Gemini Live. A simple statement and question such as "I have a job interview as a barista, but I've never been a barista before. Can you give me some suggestions?" was said, and Gemini immediately got to work offering suggestions on how to get ready for this job interview. Suggestions included things like watching videos on how to make some simple drinks and practicing how to make them at home first, which made a lot of sense. The conversation seemed natural, almost like you were talking to another human.

Image Credit: Google

What impressed me the most was the fact that the Google staffer would interrupt Gemini mid-sentence, adding or changing up the input, just like you would to a human. Gemini reacted to these interruptions like a champ and adjusted its suggestions and the conversation accordingly. It was impressive to watch live with a small group of techies, and watching their expressions as what was being shared impressed more and more.

However, the demo hit a pause when the Pixel device that was being used suddenly lost connection to Wi-Fi and Gemini stopped responding. It was interesting to see how the presenter recovered from this technical difficulty, but jokingly (but not jokingly) adding that this definitely answers whether this runs solely on-device. The answer is "No," obviously. Gemini Live has a cloud component that needs an internet connection in order to work, much like Gemini on Android today.

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The capabilities were still remarkable, and should something like losing your internet connection interrupt your flow, you can always pick up where you left off thanks to Gemini keeping a detailed history of its conversations with you. That, of course, can be a sticking point for privacy conscious users. But then again, Gemini Live is an optional experience that is slated to roll out for Gemini Advanced subscribers soon, and it is certainly something to look forward to.

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