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"Ok Google, I've had enough": how to deactivate Assistant
Google Pixel 3 Apps Tips & Tricks 4 min read 14 comments

"Ok Google, I've had enough": how to deactivate Assistant

Yes, I agree the Google Assistant can be very useful and has evolved considerably since it first arrived on our phones, but what if it keeps coming up when you don't need it, or you just don't want your phone to be always listening? In this article, you'll find out how you can turn it off and go back to your old life before Google Assistant.

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Why is it activated by mistake?

For me personally, I’m particularly annoyed that Google Assistant is activated without me having asked for it. The assistant appears multiple times whenever I unlock my smartphone. If I don’t need it (99% of the time), I have to close it before I can perform the actions I want. This happens because I might have accidentally pressed the Start button on my smartphone, which is set up to open Google Assistant.

Once it’s opened, the assistant captures your voice, analyzes it and performs the action you’ve indicated. You might even have your smartphone in your pocket and activate Google Assistant by accident. If you’re in the middle of a conversation, your device might pick up a fragment of what you've said and think you’re asking a question… and then answer you! This happened to me recently when I was talking to a friend. Suddenly, a voice from my pocket began to speak about the tomb of some Egyptian pharaoh. And believe me, at the time we weren’t in an exciting debate about Egypt.

How to turn off Google Assistant

If something like this has happened to you too and you’re sick of Google Assistant (even though you'll laugh at the more surreal searches), it’s time to turn it off. There are 3 different options that we’ll explain below.

Completely deactivate it

If you choose to disable Google Assistant completely, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Google app and select Menu (the three bars)
  2. go to Settings
  3. Google Assistant section click Settings > Phone and disable the Assistant option
google assistant screenshot
Deactivate it and forget about it. / © AndroidPIT

Deactivate the support button

In most cases, deactivating the Assistant button will be enough. This way, you’ll no longer be able to access Google Assistant via the start button, which will prevent you from accidentally activating it.

  1. In the Settings menu, select Applications, then Default applications, and then tap Device assistant app. 
  2. Here you can specify which assistant app you want to open when you press the start button. In my case, I could choose between Google and having no supporting app.

This is the least radical option, as you can continue using Assistant whenever you want, but without having to worry about it being activated unintentionally. Note that the exact wording of the path can vary, for example: Settings > Apps and notifications > Default apps > Assist and voice input

google assistant screenshot 2
The least radical option. / © AndroidPIT

Uninstall updates

Google Assistant is a relatively new development, as it didn’t exist in previous versions of Google. If we could go back to those versions, we wouldn’t have the Assistant.

So it can be as easy as that: uninstall the updates and you’re free of Google Assistant. Of course, all the other novelties that you might like will also disappear...

  1. Under Settings > Applications, go to Application manager and search for Google.
  2. When you open the Menu (the three little dots), you’ll see the Uninstall updates option pop up.
google assistant screenshot 3
You can also go back to a previous version. / © AndroidPIT

What do you think? Does Google Assistant bother you or is just the opposite? Have you had any strange experiences with Google’s trusty sidekick? Let us know in the comments!

14 comments

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  • When my headphones are plugged in, Google Assistant interrupted every 5-10 minutes to ask if I needed anything. I deactivated it.
    Now, it makes the volume fluctuate and a window at the bottom of the screen is there to "Turn On."
    This is obscenely frustrating. I want it gone. Off my phone. This will be THE MAJOR consideration when choosing my next phone.
    Do not install or activate ANYTHING without my permission.


  • What exactly is deleted when you just uninstall Google's updates? Will I lose any photos / files / music or anything?

    Thanks!


  • For users of MIUI Global 9.6 :
    Settings -> System & device -> Additional settings -> Button and gesture shortcuts -> Launch Google Assistant -> None.


  • Marees 2 months ago Link to comment

    When you disabled the Google voice assist, did it bir goodbye with the following dialogue from Ozymandias ?

    In Egypt's sandy silence, all alone,
    Stands a gigantic Leg, which far off throws
    The only shadow that the Desert knows:—
    "I am great OZYMANDIAS," saith the stone,
    "The King of Kings; this mighty City shows
    "The wonders of my hand."— The City's gone,—
    Naught but the Leg remaining to disclose
    The site of this forgotten Babylon.


  • Very useful. I don't need someone listing to me always.


    • Sanjai Sir I have already deactivated Google assistant on my smartphone. Whenever I require any piece of information, I make my own efforts to amass it and in the process push the powers of my mind to its optimum level.


  • Thank you for actually being helpful 😂


  • Thanks.
    Method 1 didn't work for me (instructions are all different on my phone).
    Method 2 hopefully did the trick.
    GA turns itself on, I think this happened after I tried Google Launcher for a few minutes but has stayed active.


  • Why don't anyone just search in settings for assist then set assist app as none? Bye Bye Google assistant.


    • Thanks Cyberkil. Almost give up until I read your comment. Simple. Effective. Exactly what I wanted. Bye Google Assistant.


    • Carba 2 months ago Link to comment

      Because Google (sorry Android) reverts back to Google Assistant as the default assist app DAILY. I have never had Google Assistant activated, but every time I swipe up on the screen, it initiates Google Assistant setup. I have selected "None" as the default assist app countless times, and the next day, it is back to "Google Assistant".

      I have even tried setting a different assistant as the default assistant (e.g. Duck-Duck Go), and what do you know, next day Google Assistant is the default assist app again.

      Of course a Google search does not yield useful solutions to this, because they clearly don't want you to deactivate Google Assistant.

      (This is on a Huawei P10 Plus with Android 8.0.0)


  • finally! This was where I was looking for the moment the assistant was available in Dutch a was automatically activated on my device. It was bothering me several times a day without me needing it. I had been looking for a way to deactivate the assistant but only could find ways that did not do the trick. Thanks to you guys... the assistant is silenced!


  • I got rid of it (along with other things and a lot of bloat) by disabling the Google Search app. I use the Google Search box, and most other Google services, in a browser.


  • storm 9 months ago Link to comment

    It needs a simple disable method that is complete and total.