How to Make Calls With Google Home

'Okay, Google. Call the dentist!'

Each smart speaker found in the Google Home line of products lets you control connected appliances, play music, participate in interactive games, shop for groceries, and more. You can also make hands-free phone calls to the United States and Canada over a Wi-Fi network. We show you how.

While you cannot call 911 or emergency services with Google Home, you can call any of your contacts, as well as any business listing maintained by Google, or you can place a call by reading the digits aloud to your device.

How to Set Up the Google App, Account, and Firmware

Several prerequisites must be met before you can use Google Home to make phone calls. First, make sure you have the latest version of the Google Home app installed on your Android or iOS device.

Next, confirm the Google account containing the contacts you want to access is linked to your Google Home device. You can do this in the Google Home app by tapping Devices (the button in the upper-right corner) > Settings (the three vertically-aligned dots) > Linked account(s).

Finally, check that the device's firmware version is 1.28.99351 or higher by tapping Devices > Settings > Cast firmware version.

Firmware is updated automatically on all Google Home devices. If the version that appears is older than the minimum requirement needed to make phone calls, contact a Google Home support specialist before continuing.

How to Enable Personal Results

If you want to call your Google contacts by saying their name ("OK, Google. Call Joe," for example) you need to enable personal results. Here's how:

  1. Open the Google Home app on your Android or iOS device.

  2. Tap on the Home icon, then select your Google Home device.

  3. Tap Device Settings (the gear icon) > More (the three vertical dots) > Recognition & personalization.

  4. Turn on Allow personal results.

How to Synchronize Your Device Contacts

If you want Google Home to call contacts saved on your Android phone or tablet, you need to sync your contacts. Here's how:

  1. Open the Google app on your Android smartphone or tablet.

    The Google app is not to be confused with the Google Home app, referenced in the previous steps.

  2. Tap your profile picture in the upper right.

  3. Select Manage your Google account.

    Make sure the Google Account you pick is the one linked to Google Home. Tap your account name and choose another account to switch if necessary. 

  4. Scroll over to the People & sharing tab and select Contact info from your devices.

  5. Turn on Save contacts from your signed-in devices.

    You can use the Google app to sync your contacts with your Google Home device.

If you're using an iOS device, you can sync your contacts by going to https://myaccount.google.com/devicecontacts and making sure Save contacts from your signed-in devices is turned on. You also need to go into the Google Home app and go to Account > Assistant settings > Services > Voice and Video calls > Mobile calling and turn on Contacts Uploading.

Configure Your Outbound Display Number

By default, all calls placed with Google Home are made with an unlisted number—typically showing up as Private, Unknown, or Anonymous. Follow the steps below to change this to a phone number of your choosing.

  1. Open the Google Home app on your Android or iOS device.

  2. Tap your profile picture in the top right > Assistant settings > Services > Voice and Video calls > Mobile calling.

  3. Under "Your own number," tap Edit > Add or change phone number.

  4. Enter your phone number, then tap Add.

  5. Google asks you to verify your phone number by sending you a text message with a code. Enter the code when prompted, then tap Verify.

The change is reflected instantly within the Google Home app, but it may take ten minutes to take effect in the system.

How to Make a Call with Google Home

You're now ready to place a call through Google Home. You can do this by using one of the following verbal commands following the Hey Google activation prompt:

  • "Call [contact name]": Initiate a call to the personal contact you specify.
  • "Call [business name]": Call a particular business based on its name in Google's listings.
  • "What is the nearest [business type]?": Locate a nearby business (for example, a gas station) and follow up with a call if you wish.
  • "Call [phone number]": Make a call the old fashioned way through Google Home by speaking its digits aloud.
  • "Redial:" Redial the last number called through your Google Home speaker.

How to End a Call with Google Home

To end a call, either tap the top of your Google Home speaker or speak one of the following commands:

  • "Hey Google, stop."
  • "Hey Google, hang up."
  • "Hey Google, disconnect."
  • "Hey Google, end call."