Saturday, February 1, 2020


Since last year’s launch of the excellent Nest Hub smart display, I often caught myself thinking how awesome it would be if Google offered a slightly bigger, louder variant of the device. The Nest Hub Max ticks those boxes and then some — so, unsurprisingly, it’s one of my favorite connected-home products to launch this year.

The centerpiece of the Google Assistant-powered Nest Hub Max is a vibrant 10-inch HD touch screen that’s a noticeable upgrade over the 7-inch panel of the smaller Nest Hub. It's complemented by an ambient light sensor, which makes the onscreen content look great regardless the light situation in the room.

I enjoyed streaming YouTube TV live soccer games on the big screen of the Google Home Max, while preparing yet another shot of espresso on weekend mornings. I also like that, when not in use, the screen of the Nest Hub Max doubles as a fantastic digital photo frame. You can choose to display your synced Google Photos, or showcase other classic and/or contemporary art of your choosing.

The audio quality of the Nest Hub Max is great, courtesy of a trio of built-in audio drivers. They include two front-facing speakers and a rear-facing woofer for a powerful bass delivery. I streamed my favorite Spotify playlists and countless podcasts, as well as whole hours’ worth of YouTube c

ontent on the device, and enjoyed the sound quality.

Overall, in line with my hopes, the Hub Max is louder and vastly more entertaining the smaller Nest Hub. The device’s built-in microphones picked up my voice commands even with the volume up. Their performance during video calls is also top-notch.

The built-in camera alone is a good reason why you should own a Google Nest Hub Max. Beyond video calls, it'll allow you to keep an eye on your home, and will even send you alerts when it detects motion. If you subscribe to a Nest Aware service (it starts at $5 per month), the Hub Max can even detect familiar faces.

The Nest camera's facial recognition capabilities also allow the gadget to adjust its home screen content and notifications to match the preferences of every household member. You can disable the camera alongside the device’s microphones via a dedicate switch on the back of the Hub Max.

Closing Argument: The Google Assistant is the best of its kind, offering countless ways to interact with it. Whether you're looking for a YouTube video with cooking instructions, today’s news, or simply need to hear something nice, the virtual assistant is always ready to, well, assist.

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