Many have found the new sound rather unpleasant.
Google Assistant, accessible through Android mobile devices and smart speakers like the Google Home and Google Nest, offers a variety of background sound effects. These include ocean waves, a crackling fireplace, and other forms of pleasant noise to help you relax or fall asleep. One of the most popular of these sound effects is simple white noise, a soft, crisp sound akin to television static. Many people like to use the white noise sound to help children fall asleep, making it an indispensable tool in their lives. This is why it was so noticeable when the sound suddenly changed.
Google Assistant users noticed last week that the white noise sound profile had been altered, and while it may sound similar at a casual listen, those who make regular use of it were able to discern the difference rather quickly. The new sound profile, according to users who have posted about it online, is much more muffled and played at an odd pitch. The sound used to loop at intervals of approximately 1 hour, but the new version seems to loop after about 10 minutes with a very noticeable break, something many are finding annoying and repetitive. Several users who used the sound to soothe children have complained about their children no longer being able to fall asleep.
It's not just you — the noise has changed. https://t.co/h6cCAc8PSg
— Mashable (@mashable) January 18, 2022
When asked by a Twitter user about why the sound was changed, the official Google Twitter account replied that they “don’t have any details to share about why the white noise sound of the Google Home was changed. Rest assured that we’re always looking for ways to improve and we’ll take this as feedback.”