Google Home is getting better and better with each update it gets. But sometimes things aren’t always as good as they sound – and some of you might find that out the hard way if you don’t heed my advice.
A recent update brought the ability to make voice calls directly from Google Home, using a simple “Ok, Google, call…” command. It’s simple and works surprisingly well. You can use a Google Voice number to place calls, or even your own cell phone number by signing in using your Google account.
Google Home lets your kids call anyone
But did you know your children can place calls just as easily on Google Home as you can? Well, they can. And not just your kids – anyone can do this.
And I never even thought of this until I got an email from one of our readers who pointed it out. But that fact is, there is no way to limit or restrict calling to ensure not just anyone can make a phone call using your shiny new smart speaker.
Here’s the email I received from Bruce F. in its entirety:
Fix your shit, Google!
Bruce brings up an excellent point here. I tested this theory by having my 5-year old try to call Walmart, and it made the call, as advertised. Hopefully, I didn’t just plant a seed, though. Next thing you know, 20 pizzas from five different pizza joints will be on my doorstep, and I didn’t order a single one of them.
Google has family accounts these days specifically for children under 13, and Google Home does a great job of distinguishing who’s talking to it. That said, it shouldn’t be all that difficult to create an option that limits or restricts voice calling from unapproved accounts or voices.
Of course, I’m no developer, so it might not be as easy as I think it should be. But one thing is for certain: Google needs to proactively address this in some manner before something potentially bad (or, annoying, at very least) happens.