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Google Home Hub: What is it and How Does it Works?

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Also known as Google Nest, the Google Home Hub is a member of the Nest family consisting of Home Max, Home Mini, and Google Home smart gadgets. The Google Home Hub is basically a virtual interface that is developed to help you complete daily tasks. It has a tablet form and is built on making your life more convenient, from making your grocery lists to managing your schedule.

As we all know, voice control functionalities are the top priority for most homeowners now. In fact, voice commands are paving the way for a brand-new world of hands-free automation to make your life simpler and better.

Google Home Hub works as command central, connecting a variety of home automation gadgets and letting you access easily the smart lights, cameras, TVs, doorbells, and other smart gadgets using only your voice. Aside from that, the Google Home Hub delivers added convenience to simplify the tasks of your daily routine.

 

How’s Google Home Hub Interface Like?

Google Home Hub Interface
© Photo by Businessinsider.com
  • Size: 4.5” tall x 7′ inch screen display
  • Bluetooth: Bluetooth 5.0
  • Voice control: Supported
  • Interface: Easy-to-use, direct, and sleek

Google Home Hub is relatively small but powerful. It stands approximately 4.5” tall. It has a 7” inch portrait-style screen display attached to an oval stand on its rear. This all-in-one powerhouse is space-saving and it’s portable to be placed anywhere at your convenience. Indeed, this smart assistant is easy to install and fit in numerous areas of your home. It is built with full-range speakers, Bluetooth 5.0, and Chromecast. You can choose from four different colors — Aqua, Chalk, Charcoal, and Sand.

Unlike other smart products, It doesn’t have a camera integrated on it. Depending on your preference, without a camera may or may not be an issue for you. If you are concerned about privacy, it’s an ideal home assistant for you. On the contrary, if you love video calling your family and friends once in a while, it may not be a worthy option. The only buttons on the exterior of the Home Hub are the mic on/off, and the volume down/up.

Also, Google has a brand-new bigger smart display through Google Home Hub’s bigger brother – the Google Nest Hub Max. It has all the same features as the Google Home Hub but comes with a 10” screen and integrated with a Nest Cam, a camera for video calling. It also has superior audio performance and developed with unique features such as gesture control.

 

Google Home Hub Functionalities

Another unique functionality of the Google Home Hub is it works as a digital frame. Using Google Photos, you can connect all your albums to the Home Hub during set up and select the photos that you want to display throughout the day. It’s a wonderful way to relive those memories of your travels and family reunions. 

Google Home Hub’s Ambient EQ automatically adjusts your screen’s brightness so that this smart assistant blends in your home’s atmosphere. You can also adjust the brightness manually. It is also integrated with the Interpreter Mode, a feature that enables you to speak with people in different dialects.

In terms of diversity, it is compatible with numerous operating systems such as Chromebooks, Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android.

 

What Does Google Home Hub Do?

The Google Home Hub works like an assistant and performs a wide range of activities such as:

 

1. Virtual Assistant

Google home hub Virtual Assistant
© Photo by theverge.com

It is a smart virtual assistant that is always ready anytime you’ll use it. It is already developed with Google Assistant which allows you to perform many things like calling someone, researching how to cut a steak, adding items to your shopping cart, or listing down what you need to buy for the day. You can also stream videos on YouTube, discover new foodie startups around your area, and ask for sports scores. 

With this, you have all the convenience of having comprehensive information on Google in an instant. Since it is compatible with numerous apps and services, it can order a pizza for you, book an Uber ride, and provide you with the latest news from CNN.

 

2. Smart Home Assistant

Google home hub Smart Home Assistant
© Photo by digitaltrends.com

With Google Home Hub’s home screen, you can turn off the lights, lock the doors, monitor CCTV cameras, and control the TVs around your home. Other than being compatible with Google products like the Google Smart Lock, the Hub works well with other smart home products such as the Nest Thermostats, and Nest Security Camera. It provides you with the ultimate control over your surroundings and safety. It is compatible with over 5,000 smart home devices across popular brands including Lenovo, Philips, Schlage, Kwikset, and more.

 

3. Turning Off/Logging Out Service

After a long day, telling the Google Home Hub Hey, Google. Good Night! will set an alarm, lock the doors, and turn off the TV and lights. As mentioned, the Ambient EQ can dim the lights of the screen to complement the ambient color and light so you’ll have a night of uninterrupted sleep. As amazing as it sounds, this feature can automatically detect over 16M combinations of color and lights in the room, acquiring from them to show images that blend with the essentials.

 

4. Works Perfectly as A Day Planner

Day Planner Google home hub
© Photo by Hubspot

Google utilizes voice matching technologies to enable personalized routines. If you’ll say Hey, Google. Good Morning! will trigger the Hub to remind you of your schedules, appointments, activities, and to-dos for the day. Also, it will read out your morning commute, today’s weather, and the daily news. All of these are accessible from the home screen.

It is developed to maximize your productivity and ensure that you stay track of your schedule. That said, it helps you navigate your daily routine with comfort and convenience. You can also say things such as Show my schedule for today, Listen to CNN news on the radio, Remind me to call Karen when I’ll be in the office.

 

5. Your Ultimate Entertainment and Media Hub

Ultimate Entertainment and Media Google home hub
© Photo by Techradar

You can listen to your favorite songs on popular music-streaming apps such as Spotify, YouTube Music, iHeartRadio, and Pandora. If not, you can play music from one of your newly-created playlists. It is developed with full-range speakers, providing you with crystal-clear audio for your home parties with friends or family reunions.

Integrated with Google Photos, it regularly updates your image stream and connects you to Live Albums. It shows your recent photos from family and friends as well as anyone who has a Live Album shared with you. If you want to stream specific images, simply say Show photos of my trip to Italy”, or “Find my photos of cats.

 

Additional All-New Features of Google Home Hub

1. Cooking Recipes

Cooking Recipes Google home hub
© Screenshot from Tech With Brett YT Channel

Are you tired of cooking the same old menu? With Google Home Hub, you can ask for some ideas with new recipes or perhaps with the ingredients you currently have. You can simply ask Hey, Google. What can I cook using meat, potatoes, and carrots?

 

2. Finding Your Keys

If you have one of Tile’s Bluetooth trackers, you can use the Google Home Hub to help you track your keys. To track your keys, simply just say “Hey, Google. Where is my car key? And from that, the Google Assistant will tell you of the key’s last known location.

 

3. Hygiene Guide

Washing your hands properly is one of the critical hygiene practices, especially during a pandemic. The Google Home Hub provides you with an all-new feature to help children in terms of proper washing of hands. Simply say Hey, Google. Help me wash my hands! From there, the Hub will play a 20-second tune to ensure proper time for washing hands.

 

4. Configuring “Hey, Google” Sensitivity

hey google Google home hub
© Screenshot from Tech With Brett YT Channel

In crowded and busier places, it’s a likely occurrence that the Google Home Hub can be initiated accidentally. If you want to configure the sensitivity whenever the “Hey, Google” wake-up phrase is spoken, you can adjust it through the Google Home app.

 

5. Improved Voice Match Support

Through the Google Assistant, it can deliver personalized information to different people at home. It is compatible with supporting a maximum of six people’s voices via Voice Match. It can sync using a display or speaker. As a result, you can only obtain the relevant information for you.

 

What Apps Work Well With The Google Home Hub?

The Google Home Hub has made its way into the tech innovation industry and has matured well. As a result, it now supports more than1,000 services and 10,000 devices. Because it has received a tremendous amount of support, Google Home has thousands and still counting products and services compatible. In this article, we will provide only the most popular Google Home-compatible apps and services. However, if you are really interested to know the full list of apps and services that are compatible with the Google Home, check it out here.

 

1. Task Management

If you’re a frequent user of Google Keep and Google Calendar, you can use Google Home Hub to add things to your shopping cart, schedule appointments, and list your grocery items. Also, there is a wide range of non-Google applications that Google Home Hub supports.

 

2. Streaming Apps

Do you have a connected audio device, Smart TV, or Chromecast at home? If yes, you can use the Google Home Hub to control these devices. Simply say Hey, Google. Play Money Heist on TV and the smart assistant will stream the specific movie on your device. There are several Google Home integrations but we will only highlight the most popular brands that have partnered with Google.

 

Task Management Apps
Streaming & Entertainment Apps

3. Smart Home Apps

If you have any smart home products at home, you can let the Google Home Hub control your devices via voice command.

 

4. Audio

Google Home Hub is compatible with many popular audio-streaming apps, including Pandora, Spotify, and Google Play Music. Also, take note that Google Home currently supports only one user per streaming service.

 

Compatible Smart Home Product Brands
Audio Apps

 

Things to Take Note When Using Google Home Hub

Let’s say you’ve already purchased the Google Home Hub, what is the first thing you’ll do? Once you’ve plugged it in, turn it on and configured it, here are the initial things to do:

 

1. Find out where’s the best spot to install Google Home Hub

Because it’s a camera-less device, the Google Home Hub can be kept in the bedroom compared to other devices. It complements and works perfectly with your night lamp, providing you with relevant daily updates about the traffic on your morning commute, the weather, and scheduled appointments.

The kitchen is also a great location since it can be a helpful cooking assistant. You can ask for guided cooking tutorials on YouTube or open recipe books using a voice command.

When determining a perfect spot for your Google Home Hub, you can also put it in the home office or living room. Since it works as a digital photo frame, you can easily watch your photos streaming on the device.

 

2. Download the Google Home App

If you’ve purchased the Hub, it’s completely useless without the Google Home app. It’s the central system that operates the whole system in the Google Home Hub. It also links to other connected smart home products around your home.

 

3. Set Up Google Home Hub with Voice Recognition

Voice controls are an essential aspect of how you communicate with this smart assistant. Integrated with Google Assistant, the Hub has the power to recognize multiple voices and associate them with individual users of the device. As a result, if you’ll ask about your scheduled appointments, you’ll only get results linked from your account. When someone else asks a similar question, his or her results are provided instead. Also, you can obtain personalized responses to vocalized queries about entertainment, curated news, local weather, and meetings.

 

4. Configure some downtime

Google Home Hub Configure Downtime
© Photo by droid-life.com

In some cases, the Google Home Hub can be disruptive to your work, bedtime, and family meals. The good news is that the Google Home Hub provides you with the option to restrict access to Google Assistant across a single or multiple Google Home devices.

To configure, here are the following steps:

  1. Launch the Google Home app
  2. Tap the Home Hub icon
  3. Click the Settings icon
  4. Tap Digital Wellbeing > Set Up
  5. If you’d like to enable the web content filtering feature, click accordingly. Otherwise, skip ahead.
  6. Make the necessary custom settings under Schedule Downtime menu

 

5. Learn How to Control Your Smart Home Devices

Regardless if you have a single smart doorbell or a collection of smart home devices, your Google Home Hub provides you with a simple method to control them.

Here are the simple steps to configure your smart home devices with the Google Home Hub:

 

6. Learn to manage your Smart Home devices

Managing Smart Home Devices Google home hub
© Screenshot from Tech With Brett YT Channel
  1. Swipe down from the top of the Google Home’s screen to open the Home View menu
  2. In this step, you’ll see a list of categories such as locks, cameras, thermostats, and lights. Tap any of the icons to access the basic control menus of your specific smart home devices
  3. Tap the “View Rooms” button to pull a list of your smart home products. Google Home Hub will show only the appliances and products you’ve connected with the Google Home app.

Adding Smart Home Devices To Google Home Hub

  1. Tap Add > Set Up Device

 

Note: Ensure that you have all your Account Information since the app will notify you for input

 

Bottom line

If you’re finding an inexpensive Google Assistant-enabled smart device that specializes in home control, then you’d love the Google Home Hub. This petite and sleek smart assistant will complement any areas in your home. For an affordable price, you already have a smart-home control panel, digital frame, and a digital assistant in one comprehensive smart product. It’s also an excellent option if you’re not picky about not having a camera integrated with it.

On the contrary, if you can’t forgo the idea of not having a camera, then purchase its bigger brother, the Google Nest Hub Max. It has all the features of the Home Hub and works as a Google Nest Cam too.

Do you have any firsthand experience with the Google Home Hub? If yes, we would love to hear your insights. Feel free to contact us or you may leave a comment below!

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