When it comes to smart home products, Google’s Nest smart speaker has elicited plenty of speculation. What would it look like? Would it be an effective replacement for Google Home? What kind of capabilities would it have?
Consider some of the speculations officially over., as Google officially reveals new Nest smart speakers via a photo release. The big news about the speaker is that it has a cloth design, along with four lights on the front of the speaker. This matches up well with the Google Home Max design and the Google Home Mini, so the basic configuration is the same. Beyond that, the speaker is basically a transition product as Google seeks to upgrade its smart home product line from the capabilities of Google Home.
The new speaker doesn’t have an official name yet, but there are other hardware products being released that hint at the arrival of an entire product line. The release of the Pixel 4a is on the horizon, as is the release of Google’s newest smartphone, which will likely be designated the Pixel 5. There are also rumors of the release of a product that combines the capabilities of Chromecast and Android TV.
The fabric wraps all the way around this version of the speaker, but the profile will likely be much different. The speaker will stand nearly nine inches tall, with a width of almost six inches.
The tech specs haven’t been released yet, but the speaker will include both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, along with a 30-watt DC power supply. Those expecting a USB-C port will likely be disappointed, as will those looking for an auxiliary input.
Other aspects of the speaker are more familiar. It does incorporate a silicon base, and the speaker features the “G” logo on the back. There will also be a mute switch, and an update has been issued is that these speakers will support the stereo pairing.
The Coronavirus has played a significant role in delaying the release of this speaker as well. It was originally supposed to come out in May at the company’s I/O developer conference, but that event was put on hold for obvious reasons.
The pricing of the new speaker has been a source of speculation as well. The size indicates that it could be more expensive than the Nest Mini, landing closer to the price of the old Google Home speaker, which costs just under $100.
The overhaul represents good news for those looking to invest in the Google Home system, but existing users may have to adapt and make some adjustments. Google is updating this product line at a difficult time, but hopefully, those transitional adjustments will be minimal.