Smart Home

New Google Home Devices: Everything You Should Know

Bryan Wolfe 05-10-2017

Google just introduced three new smart home devices that will go on sale before the end of 2017. These include two next-generation Google Home speakers plus a new camera that should make recording life’s moments even easier. Here’s a brief look at each new product.


Google Home Mini ($49)

The Google Home Mini is a smaller version of the Google Home smart speaker Google Home Review Google Home is a personal assistant smart speaker, and comes from a company that literally knows everything. The $130 Google device answers questions, controls your smart home, and plays music. Should you buy one? Read More , first released in 2016. Priced at just $49, the Google Home Mini drops the air freshener look of the first model for something almost pebble-like. Despite the design change, the Google Home Mini includes the same Google Assistant features as the original.

These features include the ability to make phone calls, play music, control smart gadgets, and more. New features include Google’s Family Link service, which allows kids to interact with Google Assistant and perform up to 50 activities and games, including musical chairs.

google home mini

At the top center of the Google Home Mini, you’ll see four white lights that note whether the device is listening or responding. You can give Google Assistant a command either by saying “Ok, Google” or by tapping on the device.

Worried about security? You can disable the microphone with a toggle next to the charging port.


The device offers 360-degree sound and can connect to any Google Chromecast Hack Your Chromecast Experience With These Tricks Did you know your Chromecast is capable of much more than simply streaming video? In this article we'll show you eight clever hacks which will make your Chromecast experience even better. Read More wireless speaker. However, it doesn’t include a 3.5mm jack.

Other noticeable specifications include:

  • Dimensions: 3.86 inches x 1.65 inches
  • Weight: 6.10 ounces
  • Supported Audio Formats: HE-AAC, LC-AAC+, MP3, Vorbis, WAV (LPCM), and FLAC
  • Wireless: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth support
  • Mics: Far-field voice recognition
  • Ports and Connectors: Micro USB port
  • Supported Operating Systems: Android, iOS

The Google Home Mini launches on October 19 with a gray, black, and orange/pink fabric cover. The rest of the device is white.

Google Home Max ($399)

If there’s a Mini, there has to be a Max, right? The Google Home Max features a larger footprint than last year’s Google Home and also ships with stereo speakers and a more luxurious design. For this, you’ll pay $399.


google home max

The Google Home Max is playable vertically or horizontally. A unique magnetic base is said to help with alignment. Inside, you’ll find dual 4.5-inch high-excursion woofers with customized 0.7-inch tweets. On the outside, you’ll find “acoustically transparent fabric.”

Google promises the Google Home Max is 20 times louder than the original speaker. You can connect it through Chromecast, Bluetooth, or with the auxiliary jack.

Other specifications include:

  • Dimensions: 13.2 inches x 7.4 inches x 6.0 inches
  • Weight: 11.7 pounds
  • Supported Audio Formats: HE-AAC, LC-AAC+, MP3, Vorbis, WAV (LPCM), FLAC, and Opus
  • Wireless: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
  • Mics: Far-field voice recognition
  • Processor: Quad-core ARM
  • Sensors: Ambient light, Orientation
  • Ports and Connectors: USB-C, 3.5 mm jack
  • Supported Operating Systems: Android, iOS

Once it launches at the end of 2017, the Google Home Max will be available in gray and charcoal.

Google Clips ($249)

Most smart cameras for the home are marketed as security devices Decorate Your Home With These 7 Stylish Security Cameras First-generation home security cameras had many flaws, including connection issues and poor video quality. They were also rather dull looking. Here are 7 stylish alternatives! Read More . Not Google Clips, a new miniature camera that Google says “is smart enough to recognize great expressions, lighting, and framing. So the camera captures beautiful, spontaneous images. And it gets smarter over time.”

Take a look:

At the heart of Google Clips is the ability to capture “motion photos.” These are several seconds long clips with no sound. Thanks to machine learning, in time, your Google Clips will learn to recognize familiar faces, including cats and dogs.


You can view your clips to select the best moments. Share directly from the app, or use Google Photos 12 Amazing Google Photos Features You Didn't Know About Google Photos is a well-known service, but it holds many little tricks. Here are 12 great features of Photos you might have missed. Read More to create movies and photo albums. With Pixel, you’ll also get free, unlimited original-quality storage for photos and clips.

Important specifications:

  • Dimensions: 1.9 inches x 1.9 inches x 0.8 inches
  • Weight: 2.1 ounces
  • Camera: Motion photos, Autofocus
  • Wireless: Wi-Fi Direct, Bluetooth LE
  • Port: USB-C
  • Battery: Up to three hours of smart capture

At least for now, Google Clips is only compatible with devices running Android 7.0 Nougat or greater, including Google Pixel, Samsung Galaxy S7, or Galaxy S8 Samsung Launches the New Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus Samsung has taken the wraps off of its next flagship smartphone. Or, more accurately, its two new flagship smartphones. And, on paper at least, these things look spectacularly good. Read More . The smart camera arrives later this year.

Where Do Google’s Products Fit in the Smart Home Market?

Google’s working harder than ever to compete in the smart home market. All of the new Google Home Speaker models are set to have increased integration with Nest products, including their cameras, thermostats, and the new Nest Hello doorbell set for release in early 2018.

The unveiling of the Google Home Mini and Google Home Max comes at a time when the smart speaker market continues to evolve and expand.

amazon echo

At Amazon, we’ve recently seen the introduction of three new Echo audio products 6 Coolest Amazon Echo (Dot) Alternatives Looking for Amazon Echo alternatives? Here are some of the best ones on the market! Read More including the Echo Plus, Echo Spot, and second-generation Echo. Apple fans will welcome the Siri-commanded HomePod speaker in December. Over at Harmon Kardon, the voice-activated Invoke with Microsoft Cortana launches before the end of the year.

Echo (2nd Generation) - Smart speaker with Alexa and Dolby processing - Charcoal Fabric Echo (2nd Generation) - Smart speaker with Alexa and Dolby processing - Charcoal Fabric Buy Now On Amazon $99.99

For those who can’t decide which intelligent personal assistant to choose, there’s always the Sonos One. The $199 smart speaker features Amazon Alexa at launch. Early next year, however, software updates will also add Google Assistant and Apple AirPlay 2 integration. That sounds truly smart, no?

Meanwhile, there’s nothing quite like Google Clips on the market. Nonetheless, there are home security cameras that will record life’s moments for later viewing. These include the well-received Circle 2 Cam by Logitech and recently introduced Kasa Cam from TP-Link.

Are you considering any of the new Google products? Let us know using the comments below.

Related topics: Google, Google Assistant, Google Home, Home Automation.

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  1. dragonmouth
    October 5, 2017 at 10:38 pm

    "Smart devices come with security and privacy concerns."
    You think?!

    While questionable privacy is a very serious problem, it is the security of the of the patient-wearable devices that should be priority A1 for everyone involved. If someone hacks into my medical records, it will cause havoc but I will survive that. If, OTOH, someone hacks into my pacemaker or my implanted medication pump, that could be literally a matter of life and death.