One of the key aspects introduced in the beta version is an updated user interface for Call Screen settings. Towards the end of May, users started noticing simplified settings with new "Protection level" options gradually becoming available. These options, namely Maximum, Medium, and Basic, allow users to customize their call screening preferences, empowering them to manage spam calls effectively.
The Natural-Sounding Voice Prompts and AI Integration
Perhaps the most noteworthy modification in this beta testing phase is the implementation of natural-sounding voice prompts to identify callers and their purpose. This feature is being tested exclusively with selected Pixel 6 and newer device owners in the United States. It's important to note that the AI chipset, Tensor, is required for this functionality, suggesting the utilization of on-device AI. The primary objective behind this advancement is to enhance the capabilities of Call Screen and reduce the frequency of spam calls, providing users with greater control and peace of mind.
Expanding Availability and Future Developments
While the beta program is currently limited to Pixel 6 and newer devices within the United States, Google has hinted at expanding Pixel Call Screen capabilities with "multi-step, multi-turn conversational AI" later this year. Initial speculations tied this development to the release of the Pixel 8 and large language models (LLMs). However, the beta announcement clarifies that older Tensor devices will also benefit from these advancements, ensuring a wider reach for the enhanced Call Screen features.
User Feedback and Ongoing Updates
Google actively encourages users to provide feedback on their experience with the beta testing by utilizing the "Help Us Improve" feedback button within the Phone by Google app. This collaborative approach allows users to contribute their insights and suggestions, aiding Google in refining and perfecting the Call Screen feature. As the beta program progresses, users can look forward to more updates and announcements from Google regarding this project.