Friday, 20 October, 2017

Google Home Mini: Speaker, digital assistant worth $49

All of the the audio controls are in a touchpad on the right earbud All of the the audio controls are in a touchpad on the right earbud
Carlton Santiago | 05 October, 2017, 00:29

Called the Google Home Mini - which Google says is smaller than a donut - is a rounded disk covered in the hottest new technology material: fabric.

The Google Home Max will be available in the USA in December, but pre-orders will open 13 November.

Google Home Max is a large speaker, and it's housing some serious hardware behind that friendly facade.

With the latest Home update in the Play Store, Google has included support for manually assigning Google Home devices to specific rooms in your home, allowing for way better organization and synchronization between these devices.

The Home Mini is Google's answer to Amazon's Echo Dot, with a focus on portability and Google Assistant specific applications.

The doughnut-shaped device, which is small enough to fit in the palm of a hand, comes in three colours - chalk, charcoal and coral. The prompt you need is "Okay Google" or "Hey Google" and the smart speaker will spring to life.

Everything you can do with standard Google Home, you can do with the Home Mini. It also supports touch gestures to control the audio.

Tap either edge of the Home Mini to adjust volume, while tapping the center of the device will play/pause music playback.

It also has lights at the top, which will let you know when the Home Mini is in the middle of interacting. The new Home Max however is a pleasant surprise since it appears to be the company's bid to compete against Sonos. You might not have been interested in smart speakers until now, but if you got one free with your new phone, you'd try it out, right? And then, at the tail end of the Google Home announcement, the thump of a bass showed up. I've owned a Google Home since it launched in the United Kingdom, and never felt it was a replacement to my speaker system. You'll have to wait for our full review for the final verdict on that though.

The new Google Home Mini costs £49 in the United Kingdom and $49 in the US.

This feature, while it's actually something really basic, can have many different utilities: you can use a broadcast for telling your friends something in another room, you can use one for waking up your children in the morning, and a lot more!

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