Published: Wed, October 10, 2018
Tech | By

Google Home app updated in time for stronger smart home push

Google Home app updated in time for stronger smart home push

Google is teasing that theory with a new video out today, which ties together a couple prominent YouTubers saying that everything about the Pixel 3 XL has already leaked, and nothing interesting is going to happen. Instead of being a control center for your smart home, as the name suggests, the main focus is video content suggestion - a holdover from when it was the Chromecast app. The display is backed by a "crystal clear speaker" and the attractive design with fabric base and rounded corner display is available in Chalk, Charcoal, Aqua and Sand finishes.

Being a Google Assistant-driven device, the Google Home Hub responds to queries well - not just due to the assistant's superior proclivities and adeptness with search, but also through useful visual aids on the screen.

Google uses the screen to show you more information about the weather, about local restaurants, and so on.

It lets you not only hear Google Assistant and your app integrations but also see them and the information you're seeking. Being able to do that without holding your phone up is obviously a better experience - but it remains to be seen if it's something that would make shoppers pick one smart display over another. For voice commands the device has a 2 mic array. It can pull up photos and features your best shots with a new feature called Live albums. Hopefully this is just the first step in the plan to actually break these controls out into a dedicated shade or panel within Android - a swipe gesture to quickly launch home controls would be a fantastic step forward on the overall assistant/home control ecosystem.

"We consciously did not put a camera on the Hub so you can use it in private spaces like your bedroom", she said. It allows the screen to automatically adjust to match the lighting in the room, so photos on Google Home Hub will blend in with the room, too. And, when it's time for bed, it'll dim the screen. The devices also have upgraded camera technology, which includes a feature called NightSight specially designed for flash-free shots in low-light conditions. You can control over 10,000 types of smart home devices from over 1,000 popular brands.

In addition to unified view for devices, the Google Home app now also lets you check in on your home, or your devices rather, even when you're not at home.

This leaves the Google Home Hub as a cheaper alternative to the Portal ($199-plus) or the Echo Show ($230), and something the company thinks customers will feel more comfortable placing all around their homes.

GoogleWhen will Google Home Hub be available? It'll be in stores from 22 October in the United States and UK.

Like this: