If you’re not in hurry to buy a Pixel 4 but would like to have a small taste of its Assistant upgrades, you’re close to get your fix. Google is offering a compact, more Pixel 4-like version of its AI helper to older Android phones, so far focusing on Pixel 3 owners.
The new version no longer monopolizes the screen when it gives an answer rather, it occupies only the space it requires. You may not feel quite so lost when you ask a question.
To be clear, this doesn’t provide everything you’ll find in Assistant on the Pixel 4. It doesn’t provide the continued conversation or screen context features, for example, and certainly doesn’t share the new look. Known interface elements are still there. This is more to show Google’s new approach, which treats Assistant more as a background friend than a front-and-center experience.
Even then, it’s nice to know that you don’t have to buy Google’s latest to get an obvious functional difference this swiftly.