If you don’t like Google Assistant, then you can use this trick to replace the Home button shortcut with Google Now on Tap instead.
I have previously done a tutorial on how to disable Google Assistant on the Pixel and the Pixel XL. Since then, I’ve learned that while there was a huge outcry about Google not rolling out Google Assistant to everyone, there’s also a bunch of people who dislike it and would rather use Google Now on Tap instead. Sadly, Google is not giving us the option to pick between which of these we can trigger when long pressing on the Home button.
Sure, you can swipe up from the screen to activate the Google Now on Tap functionality while you are in the Google Assistant screen, as I showed here, but some people do not want to take that extra step. So after I saw this person on Reddit talking about how to replace Google Assistant with Google Now on Tap, I had to do a quick guide on it. However, this is only possible because Google Assistant has not rolled out globally and it will likely stop working once it actually does (if it actually does).
Replace Google Assistant
- Launch the Settings application
- Scroll down to the Personal section
- Tap on the Languages & Input option
- Tap on the Languages option at the top
- Tap on the Add a Language option
- Scroll down and then tap on English
- Scroll down again and then tap on the US Virgin Islands option
- Tap on the 3-dot menu icon at the top right of the screen
- Tap on the Remove option
- Tap on the check box to the left of the English (United States) option (or whatever your default one was set to)
- Tap on the Garbage Can icon at the top right of the screen
- Tap on the OK button to confirm the process
- Press the Home button to go back to the Home Screen
- Then long press on the Home icon to activate Google Now on Tap
So as you can see, the process is simple even though there are a lot of steps to actually getting it done. If you’re coming from another language then just choose your native language instead of English and then choose a region that Google Assistant has not rolled out to yet. As of writing this, Google Assistant is limited to English and in the continental United States, but this will change eventually. And again, remember that this workaround will stop working once a global rollout is completed.
So to start, simply tap launch the Settings application and then scroll down until you can tap on the Languages and Input option. From here, the top option could be Languages and you want to tap on that as well. We’re going to add a language and region here that doesn’t officially support Google Assistant. So keep the language set to English (unless you want it on something else), and then choose a region that currently doesn’t have Google Assistant.
Since the Reddit user suggested US Virgin Islands, that is the option I went for here and in the embedded video above. Once that is done, you’ll be taken back to the Languages section and from here we’ll need to remove the default language you had setup. So tap on the 3-dot menu and then you should see an empty check box to the left of each languages that are here. If you have multiples, then you’ll need to remove all of them that currently supports Google Assistant.
For US residents, this is easy because we’re only needing to remove the default one on our device. Once you select the one you want to remove, tap on the Garbage Can icon at the top right and you’ll be asked if you’re sure you want to delete it. You can always come back in here and add it again, so there’s no need to worry unless you’re changing things to a language you don’t understand. As long as you keep things on English (or your native language) then you’re good to go.
Once that is deleted, go ahead and tap the Home button and you’ll be taken back to the Home Screen. This part will take a few seconds to load though as it’s bringing in the new language and region, but it shouldn’t take that long. Now you can long press on the Home button and you should see Google Now on Tap activated since we just replaced Google Assistant.