How often do you use Google Assistant on your phone?

Can you feel that? It’s the mobile industry slowly preparing to leave Techtober behind for another year. Sure, the next two months are jam-packed in their own way — Best Buy is starting its Black Friday deals before you’ll hand out a single piece of Halloween candy — but this year’s crop of smartphones are announced and, for the most part, stocked in stores. As the Phones Editor here at Android Police, let me tell you: it’s a relief.

While Manuel Vonau and I were exchanging notes on this year’s Pixel devices — check out our Pixel 8 Pro and Pixel 8 reviews, if you haven’t already — we ended up discussing Assistant’s new Summaries feature for articles, which sees Google serve you a handful of bullet points wrapping up whatever’s on the page. As I covered in my review, I wasn’t particularly impressed with the tool (you’re better off checking out the similar feature we have at the top of our news articles), but before I could even test it, I realized something a little silly: I apparently hadn’t activated Assistant’s voice activation on my Pixel 8 Pro.

I feel like I’ve set up ten different phones over the past two months, so it was only a matter of time before I’d accidentally skip a step. But to be clear, this was days into a (relatively short) review period, meaning I hadn’t tried to activate Assistant with my voice a single time in nearly a week with the phone. I’m not even certain I activated it through any of Google’s other methods — it’s entirely possible I hadn’t touched Assistant for days leading up to my conversation with Manuel.

Now, granted, I have a handful of smart speakers scattered around my house, along with a smart display in my kitchen, so I do tend to interact with Assistant in other ways. I also use other tools like Gboard’s voice typing pretty frequently. Still, it took several attempts at saying “Hey, Google” with no response to see just how infrequently I actually rely on Assistant on my smartphone.

So, I’m curious. How often do you use Google Assistant on your phone? I have a feeling there’s very few people in between the extremes here — either you use it or you don’t. While I’m sure Assistant with Bard could change these results in just a few short months, it’s good to see where Assistant stands on smartphones at the moment.