Now, building on that effort, the company has announced a way to find the same information through a dedicated 'Google Assistant helpline.'
Here's all you need to know about it.
Back in September, Google had announced a dedicated phone line to let Indians ring up Google Assistant and seek information ranging from weather, news updates to sports scores.
The capability works 24/7 in Hindi and English - without any additional charge - and is readily available for people using feature phones with 2G or slow internet connectivity.
Now, given the COVID-19 crisis and the lockdown stemming from it, Google is using this helpline to let people know the locations of the nearest night and food shelter in their city.
According to the company, all one has to do is call the helpline number 0008009191000 and ask for food or night shelters (either in English or Hindi) for their respective city.
If the city mentioned in the query is one of the 33 cities (including Delhi) Google is providing this service for, the person will get the locations of all food/night shelters available in the district right away.
From there, it would be relatively easy for them to visit the place and get food or a place to stay with their family.
The Phone Line with Google Assistant for Vodafone Idea customers now delivers information about food and night shelters to their 2G and feature phone users.— Google India (@GoogleIndia) April 9, 2020
📣 Please circulate this information and help spread the word.@PMOIndia @mygovindia @GoI_MeitY @rsprasad pic.twitter.com/j6dzxCgviD
While the helpline would come really handy in letting daily wage workers (who often have feature phones) know where they could have a meal, there are some major caveats involved.
For one, this helpline only works for people operating on the network of Vodafone Idea; if a person is on Jio or Airtel then this would do no good at all.
The helpline is being promoted through online channels, but to bring it into full use, the internet giant has to make sure that its availability is promoted on the ground through local NGOs and authorities. Only then people would be able to use it.
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