Google announced that all Nexus devices that are not on Project Fi will soon start taking advantage of a data-saving feature that has remained exclusive to its Fi network – Wi-Fi Assistant.
This feature is set to be available to all users of Google Nexus 6P, Nexus 6, Nexus 5X and even the older Nexus 5, moving on from being limited to last year’s pair of Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X as well as the Motorola-made Nexus 6, which came in back in 2014. If you have used Windows 10, this Wi-Fi Assistant feature works in almost the same manner as Wi-Fi Sense.
Google made this information public via an official Google+ post, explaining that all Google Nexus users who are not using Project Fi will still be able to save on their cellular data by taking advantage of Wi-Fi Assistant. The feature allows the device to automatically scan for the millions of open Wi-Fi hotspots and connects you to the best available. In this way, you can save on your data pack while still be connected to the internet via the free Wi-Fi spots.
One might be worried about the safety of open Wi-Fi hotspots, which are usually located in public places. However, Google’s Project Fi promises to offer great security and privacy via its VPN. While the search engine giant claims that it does not view or record the content sent over the VPN, it adds that it still looks out for any abuse so as to improve the services.
The fact that Google’s Wi-Fi Assistant is now available on devices that were previously not compatible with Project Fi, namely Google Nexus 5 (2013), is a welcome move by users of these devices. In addition, those currently using supported carriers will not have to get a different Fi SIM card in order to use this data-saving feature, instead, they have to watch out for an update that will bring this capability to their non-Project Fi Nexus 6P, Nexus 6, Nexus 5X as well as the older Nexus 5.
Keep in mind that this Wi-Fi Assistant feature is limited to Google Nexus devices that can run Android 5.1 Lollipop and above, meaning those on the Google Nexus 4 are still among those included in the update. If you are not yet seeing Wi-Fi Assistant on your Nexus 6P or Nexus 5, you can go to the Settings>Wi-Fi>Configure (gear icon) and from there, enable the “Use open Wi-Fi automatically” option.