Google Home Review: Home is where the smart is
Google has become indispensable. It’s the first place you go whenever you need to find information on anything. It’s on our computers it’s on our phones. Sometimes even in our cars and on our wrist. Now Google wants to be in our homes and apartments and it’s new one hundred twenty nine dollars. Google Home voice activated speaker. That’s exactly how it’s doing
It’s a puzzle to talk about who will hold without also talking about Amazon’s Echo and they are very similar. Both are voice activated connected smart speakers I can play music control, a bunch of smart home devices and things for you to do list or a shopping list and do a bunch of web searches all with just your voice. Now Google has further ambitions for home to go beyond what Amazon’s currently doing. But let’s start with the device itself the home is shorter in squatter than the echo and to be honest it looks a lot like an air freshener I don’t really think that’s a bad thing. It makes it really easy to integrate home and it doesn’t stick out like an obvious piece of gadgetry. Though it’s only available in white but you can buy various fabric and metal shelves to customize it to your home decor on top of the touch panel. Lets you control volume play or pause your music and actually the speakers. Go integrate into this panel are farfield microphone so it can hear you from across the room you can activate it with just your voice by saying OK Google or Hey Google and you can even hear you when you play music or other audio.
As a smart speaker the home is pretty much just as good as the echo it gets surprisingly loud and can fill a room with sound and in addition to the built in sources of Google, YouTube Music, Pandora and Spotify you can cast audio to it from your phone or your laptop.
It’s not the kind of speaker you’d use to drive a house party but for every day listening is perfectly fine. If you do or more power you can set the Home’s audio to a Chromecast audio that’s connected to a larger speaker. You just say Hey Google play this music on Chromecast audio and the audio will just shift right over. You can also pair multiple home units together and simultaneously play music to all. In addition Google’s also added the ability to send video from the home to a chromecast.
And finally the Google home can also control smartphone gadgets. It supports nest Philips you and smart things which means you can control your thermostat your lights and other gadgets who just your voice. Now I’ve used this a lot and I found that the home is a little bit more reliable than the echo for doing this. I usually only have to ask it wants to do extent but the biggest thing that sets the home apart is a fact that it’s Google search engine and algorithms powering that means you can ask in many of the same things you ask Google on the computer and get similar results
Google home can remember the context of what you ask. The only thing that really spoils this experience is you have to say OK Google before each and every question you ask.
But like the video casting features the homes assistant is more limited than you might expect. For starters it only works with one Google account at a time and that makes a really hard to use it as a family device. So if my wife asked to go home to add something to it to do is it gets added to my to do list in my devices not hers. Google says that it is working on this and it does plan to add multiple accounts support in the future. I also asked Homes assistant to do things I’m used to doing on my phone such as sending messages or making phone calls but it doesn’t.
Google really wants its home to be the access point to IT services in your house for all those times in your hands or folder you’re not looking at the screen right now it’s mostly just a better echo. It’s easier to set up. It looks a little nicer and it’s a little bit more reliable but it’s easy to see the potential here how Google can leverage its existing services and search powers to go way beyond what Amazon’s doing. But then the question remains Are you ready to have an always listening go by in your house
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