Switching your virtual assistant’s language is a great way to practice your Chinese, Japanese or any other 语言.
In this guide, we’ll show you how you can add Chinese (or other supported languages) to Google Home/Assistant, and Apple’s Siri. The language taught in this lesson will also work with any other digital assistants such as Alexa, Bixby, or Xiaomi.
If you want to learn the key commands to control playback, ask questions, set reminders, and more, we have made a special Skritter deck. Add this deck to your account, and use Skritter’s SRS to truly learn the terms. Search “Virtual Assistant” in the Skritter: Write Chinese app for iOS and Android
Set up your Apple device:
Set up your Google device:
Now that you’ve set it up, try saying this:
Nǐ néng zuò shénme?
What are you able to do?
This will bring up a list of options. On iOS, you can tap into each menu to see a range of sentences. Have a go practicing with one of these:
Google Assistant will also bring up some options, and also prompt other things you can ask it. They also have an exhaustive list of things you can say over on their support pages. They currently only have a document for Taiwan (Traditional Chinese) but it’s easy to convert this to simplified if you like. You can also switch between English and Chinese using the language dropdown menu at the bottom. Both lists are identical, and a good way to see how things get translated.
Here are some easy practice sentences you can try with your newly set-up devices. We hope you found this blog and video useful. Let us know in the YouTube comments any cool things you can say to your assistant in Chinese.
Míngtiān zǎoshang qī diǎn jiào xǐng wǒ.
Wake me up tomorrow at 7am.
Bāng wǒ guān diào suǒyǒu nàozhōng.
Do me a favor and turn off all the alarms.
Tíxǐng wǒ mǎi niúnǎi.
Remind me to buy milk.
Bāng wǒ ānpái míngtiān zǎoshang qī diǎn de huìyì.
Help me schedule a meeting for tomorrow morning at seven.
Bòfàng pàiduì de gē.
Play some party music.
Míngtiān de tiānqì zěnmeyàng?
What’s the weather like tomorrow?