Google Assistant on NVIDIA Shield: Overview

Last Updated on July 4, 2023 by Tim Wells

Welcome to your comprehensive guide on how to get the most out of Google Assistant on your NVIDIA Shield! 

We’ll walk through every step of the process together – from setting up Google Assistant on your NVIDIA Shield, customizing your preferences, exploring basic commands and advanced features, and troubleshooting common issues. 

By the end, you’ll learn how to enhance your entertainment experience and control your smart home devices. 

So let’s get started!

How to Set Up Google Assistant on NVIDIA Shield

If you’re like me, you love to kick back and enjoy your favorite shows without manually browsing through hundreds of options. 

Setting up Google Assistant on my NVIDIA Shield was a game changer. In this section, I’ll share how to get it all ready.

First things first, you’ll need a few things to get started:

  • A compatible remote or controller: The SHIELD remote or the SHIELD controller (2015 or 2017) are your keys to activating Google Assistant. If you’ve got the SHIELD controller from 2017, you can go hands-free by saying, “Hey, Google” or “OK, Google.” Wondering if your controller is compatible? Just navigate to Settings > Remotes & Accessories to check.
  • A Google account: I bet you’ve got one of these already, right? You’ll need it to sign into Google Assistant on your NVIDIA Shield. Any personal Google account will do, whether it’s Gmail, YouTube, or Google Photos. However, corporate Google accounts will not work. Stick to your personal accounts, preferably those ending with “”
  • An Internet connection: This may seem obvious, but I’ve seen people forget the basics. Your NVIDIA Shield must be connected to the internet via Wi-Fi or Ethernet for Google Assistant to work. You can check your network status by heading to Settings > Network & Internet.

Alright, you’re all set!

Now let’s dive into the steps to enable Google Assistant on your NVIDIA Shield. It’s as simple as setting up a new game console.

  1. First, ensure your Shield has the latest software update. You need the SHIELD Experience Upgrade 6.0 or higher. You can verify this by going to Settings > About > System upgrade.
  2. Sign in to your Shield with a Google account. Remember that G-suite corporate accounts are not compatible with Google Assistant. So stick with a personal account, ideally ending with “”
  3. Next, grab your Shield remote or Shield controller and press the voice search or NVIDIA buttons, respectively. This will launch the Google app.
  4. Follow the onscreen instructions to sign in with your Google account and grant the necessary permissions for Google Assistant to work its magic. 
  5. Now, if you’re like me and love the convenience of hands-free commands, this one’s for you. For this, you’ll need the Shield controller (2017). Just enable this feature by going to Settings > Device Preferences > Google Assistant > Enable “OK Google” Detection. Make sure your controller has firmware version 1.14 or higher and at least 30% battery life. This was a lifesaver for me during my movie marathons!
  6. Finally, you can also personalize your Google Assistant settings. Just use the Google Assistant app on your Android phone or iPhone. You can add personal info, set up payments, and configure music preferences. The options are endless.

I’ve been using Google Assistant on my NVIDIA Shield for a while now, and it’s changed how I interact with my TV. 

Give it a try. Your voice is the only remote control you’ll need!

How to Use Google Assistant on NVIDIA Shield

Google Assistant has a wealth of standard commands across all devices and a few that are unique to the NVIDIA Shield TV. 

Basic Commands

Now imagine this: You’re sprawled on your comfy couch, SHIELD remote or controller in hand. You’re only a few words away from all of your favorite movies and TV shows. 

It’s as simple as “Hey, Google, find action movies.” 


“Hey, Google, play Stranger Things on Netflix.”

Then you’re good to go. 

You can also adjust the settings or fetch information just as quickly. All it takes is a simple “Hey Google, turn up the volume,” or “Hey Google, who won the football game last Sunday?” 

Google Assistant on NVIDIA Shield uses your TV screen to display additional information. 

I remember asking it about the weather, and instead of just telling me, it showed me a 10-day forecast with detailed visuals. Or when I was looking for more information on the actor in a particular movie, I got a montage of his movies and photos on my TV. 

It’s like having a conversation with your TV, only it’s much smarter and more useful.

  • “Turn on SHIELD”
  • “Turn off SHIELD”
  • “Open [name of app] on SHIELD”

Volume Control

  • “Set volume to 50% on SHIELD”
  • “Increase/decrease volume on SHIELD”
  • “Mute/unmute volume on SHIELD”

Playback Features

  • “Play [name of Netflix, HBO NOW, CBS, Viki, or Starz show] on SHIELD”
  • “Play [name of song] on [name of app] on SHIELD”
  • “Watch [name of channel] on YouTube TV on SHIELD”
  • “Play on YouTube on SHIELD”
  • “Pause on SHIELD”
  • “Play on SHIELD”

Photos and Smart Home

  • “Show me my pictures from Egypt on SHIELD”
  • “Show me my pictures from last weekend on SHIELD”
  • “Dim the lights”
  • “Set the temperature to 72 degrees”

Advanced Features

As a geek, I just had to see what more Google Assistant on NVIDIA Shield could offer. 

The ability to connect my smart home devices was a game-changer. Now, I say, “Hey, Google, good night,” and my lights go out. The thermostat adjusts itself, and it lets me know my schedule for the next day. 

Routines have also become a part of my life. 

I’ve set up a routine where I say, “Hey, Google, good morning,” and I instantly get the weather, news, and traffic updates. My lights and coffee maker turn on, and my favorite music starts playing. 

It’s a fantastic way to start the day.

Want to change the language or voice of your Google Assistant on NVIDIA Shield? Easy. 

Want to adjust the volume or sensitivity? Done. 

Head over to Settings > Device Preferences > Google Assistant on your NVIDIA Shield, and it’s all there for you to play with.

You can also turn off your TV and NVIDIA Shield with one command using HDMI CEC. 

You can also ask Google Assistant on NVIDIA Shield to play your favorite songs from services like Spotify or YouTube Music. 

I remember saying, “Hey, Google, play some rock music on Spotify.” Within seconds, I was headbanging to some classic 80’s metal.

If you want to take a trip down memory lane, Google Assistant on NVIDIA Shield can display photos from your Google Photos account. Just say, “Hey, Google, show me my photos from Hawaii,” and you’re instantly transported back to those beautiful beaches and sunsets.

So, if you’re ready to take your NVIDIA Shield experience to the next level, it’s as easy as saying, “Hey, Google!”

How to Fix Common Issues or Errors with Google Assistant

Let’s roll up our sleeves and dive into some troubleshooting for Google Assistant on NVIDIA Shield. 

As a side note, while I’m pretty good with tech stuff, it took a few trials and errors before I got the hang of it. Trust me, a little patience goes a long way!

Do you have difficulty accessing Google services like the Play Store or Google Assistant on your SHIELD TV? I feel you. I’ve been there. 

This could be due to Google’s “Play Protect” program that caught a misbehaving app on your device. You can remove the apps or tame Play Protect by disabling it in the Google Play Store settings.

Occasionally, you try to add Shield as a Google Assistant device, but it insists on being a Cast device. This might be because Google Assistant hasn’t been enabled on Shield, or your Google account isn’t linked to your Shield device. 

My quick fix was to launch Google Assistant from the Shield home screen and set it up. Alternatively, you can go to Settings > Device Preferences > Accounts & Sign In > Add account.

Is Plex or Kodi playing hard to get when you’re trying to use voice commands? This might be due to the apps not supporting Google Assistant commands, or there might be a permission issue. 

You can check if the app is supposed to support Google Assistant commands, grant the necessary permissions, or try using alternative commands or apps.

Trying to use Google Assistant routines or custom actions with the Shield but having no luck? It could be due to incorrect setup or limitations in supported actions. 

Check your routines and make sure you’re using supported actions or devices. Sometimes, you might need third-party apps or services to create custom actions.

Is your remote or controller firmware refusing to update? Or can’t enable hands-free “OK Google” detection? 

It could be due to low battery life or a software issue. Try charging your remote or controller to over 30% battery life and update the software and firmware. Sometimes, adjusting the sensitivity level helps too.

Does your Google Assistant always crash or refuse to load? This could be due to a software bug, a corrupted cache, or a network problem. 

Clearing the cache and data of the Google app, updating the app and the device software, and restarting the device worked for me. And don’t forget to check your internet connection!

If your Google Assistant doesn’t start or respond to “Hey Google” or “OK Google,” check your microphone for dirt or damage. 

Retraining your voice model and enabling “Hey Google” detection in the settings may also do the trick.

Can’t get Google Assistant to control your smart home devices? This could be due to incompatible devices, account issues, or a network problem. 

Make sure your smart home devices are compatible with Google Assistant, and try linking or unlinking your accounts. A quick Wi-Fi connection check can also solve a lot of these issues.

And finally, if Google Assistant can’t play content from certain apps, or can’t use routines or custom actions, remember to check if the app supports Google Assistant commands, grant necessary permissions, or use alternative commands or apps. Ensure your routines are set up correctly, and use supported actions or devices.

Wrapping It Up

And there you have it! All the nitty-gritty details of getting the most out of Google Assistant on your NVIDIA Shield. From those first basic commands to advanced features and even some troubleshooting, we’ve covered quite a bit of ground.

Even with all the potential issues we discussed, having Google Assistant on your NVIDIA Shield is a game-changer. How cool is asking your TV to dim your living room lights or show you your vacation photos from last summer? 

The Google Assistant has a ton to offer, and the NVIDIA Shield makes it even better.

Here’s my final nugget of advice: take your time, explore the settings, and don’t be afraid to ask Google Assistant some random questions. 

You might be surprised at what Google Assistant on your NVIDIA Shield can do! 

Tim Wells