Note: This article was first published on 25 June 2019.
Google Nest Hub is officially launched in Singapore today. The device was first unveiled at Google I/O in May this year. The device operates mainly via Google Assistant (i.e. using voice control) and its 7-inch touch-enabled display also responds smoothly to touch inputs. The device comes in two colours; i.e., Charcoal and Chalk.
We had a fleeting chance to interact with Google Nest Hub in Chalk finish.
Its display sits on a fabric stand that’s light grey in colour. Personally, we prefer the Chalk finish as it will blend seamlessly with most home décor.
There are a pair of far-field microphones and an Ambient EQ sensor at the top bezel of its display. The mics pick up voice commands, and with its Voice Match technology, the device's responses are personalized to the particular user. The Google Nest Hub is able to store up to six user profiles. On the other hand, the Ambient EQ sensor detects the amount of ambient light and adjust the display’s brightness accordingly to output just the right brightness required in the environment of use.
As a kitchen helper, it will display your favourite recipes and its soothing voice commands will step you through your culinary experience. There’s no built-in power supply so the device needs to be tethered to a wall power socket. It isn’t resistant to dust or water, so it’s best to keep the device away from liquids in the kitchen. Hopefully, there's a version of it with some water/dust resistance to better weather more varied/challenging cooking environments.
Besides being a good kitchen assistant, the device fits right into your living room where it can act as your entertainment command hub. Chromecast your favourite Netflix shows to your TV or stream your curated Spotify music from the comfort of your couch just via voice commands. Take note that you'll need a Chromecast supported TV for this functionality and while this may sound like a redundant function when you have a smart TV or smart-enabled TV, the whole point of the Google Nest Hub is to control your home with voice commands.
You can also corral a speaker group in other to stream music in unison to create a cocooning listening experience no matter where you are located at home.
Google Nest Hub also links up with smart home appliances like MiJia robot vacuum cleaner and the LG SmartThinQ AC unit to keep your home clean and cool.
It also pairs up with security cameras like the Mi Home Security 360° 1080P for smart home security.
In addition, there’s a home view dashboard to see all connected smart devices at a single glance!
The device doesn’t sit idle, even when it’s not in active usage, it will double up as a photo frame to display your latest photos from Google Photo. Create Live Albums from the Google Photo app, upload your favourite shots, and let Nest Hub do its job!
At the end of the day, Google Nest Hub is able to recognize the Routine of the user and let him wind down with just a simple voice command as the Routine feature is able to daisy-chain all associated automated tasks, i.e., dim the lights, draw the smart home curtains and set the wake-up alarm in a single swoop. Its Downtime feature will help ensure the user get a restful sleep by disabling notifications and keep his wake-up alarm in place.
With seamless integration to over 2 million smart devices from over 3,500 global brands; this smart home command hub may just be your perfect smart home companion.
It’s now available at a recommended price of S$189 from Challenger, Courts, M1, and the Google Store.
For a limited time, you can also redeem a Mi Home Security 360° 1080P camera for free.