Google Home Mini
Updated: Jan 9
Should you buy this smart speaker over a speaker such as an Echo?
For the longest I thought I wouldn’t need a smart speaker. Once I got my hands on this one, I can’t seem to stop using it.
"The Google Assistant is a very intuitive AI system, so being able to pull up a ton of information through the google search is satisfying and welcomed."
Google Home Mini Specs:
360 sound with 40mm driver
The Google Home Mini I think is one of the best smart speakers around hands down. Everything about the speaker in terms of operating the smart speaker just feels...natural. I found myself completely comfortable with the ability to navigate the options of the speaker through voice, adjusting the volume through touch and pausing and playing music through touch as well. The Google Assistant is a very intuitive AI system, so being able to pull up a ton of information through the google search is satisfying and welcomed. The assistant also did not lag when it came to pulling off a string of commands at once. For example: “Ok Google, play friends on netflix on my living room TV, turn the temperature to 71 degrees and play channel 83 on SiriusXM radio on my kitchen speaker and the downstairs TV”. After sounding off on these commands, it was done one by one and stated what it was doing, when it was doing it. Also, while I was saying theses commands, I was relaxing on my couch while the speaker was in the kitchen. The mic to pick up the commands are very well put together.
One thing that really popped out to me was the fact that I have a ton of compatible smart devices in my home that works with Google Assistant. Examples of these compatible devices were my smart TV’s, thermostats, home security and appliances. I did know that I had devices that were compatible with the internet with their own separate app, but being able to add all of them to the Google Home platform and operate them from my Google Home Mini was refreshing. It is nice to just handle my devices in one platform.
“There were a couple of times when I just wanted to connect my phone via bluetooth and just had connectivity issues. It would take around 3-4 attempts to connect."
The Google Home Mini is a great device, but it does come with it’s drawbacks as well too. There were a couple of times when I just wanted to connect my phone via bluetooth and just had connectivity issues. It would take around 3-4 attempts to connect. When connecting with another bluetooth speaker I had nearby, it would connect without any issues. I also confirmed that I was not connected to either speaker before trying to connect to the other.
Another issue I had with Google is the lack of some audio and video platforms. For example, I was a little thrown off when I found out Apple music is not supported but Deezer (A french music streaming service) is. Also when it came to video platforms, I expected certain basic internet video providers like Hulu to be an enabled service but it was not.
Overall this smart speaker is a must get around the holiday season. I say this because it packs a ton of features, and on the market right now you can pick one up for around $25 online. Yes this is an older model speaker, but the Google Assistant tied to the speaker is ever changing with updates and is really what makes this speaker stand out.