Right now, the new audio news feature is limited to a select few users, but Google will be expanding it to more Assistant users in the future. "At any point in your day when you want to listen to the latest news. the Google Assistant will be ready with new stories and updates to the ones you've already heard", said Google. It's all based on your location and interests, but you can still tell Google to skip a story you don't want to hear.
The new audio news experience creates an on-the-fly playlist for you consisting of top stories and updates you care about, and then longer-form, deep-dive content. The prototype relies on single-topic stories-segmented out from newscasts or shows-to contribute to the audio news feed. But now the company collaborated with The Associated Press, The Hollywood Reporter, The New York Times and The Washington Post - among other services to offer up on-demand, up-to-the-minute news.
However, there were some caveats to this - aside from your chosen station's political leaning, you couldn't really choose the exact kind of news you wanted to ingest on a daily basis, and you were also at the mercy of the station's schedule and ads.
To improve and build out this audio news experience, we've built an open specification, available for news organizations that would like to participate. Google pitches the new system as a way to get quick, personalized news in audio form throughout the day.
The new feature is only available to a limited number of users in the U.S., and an global release will come later on.