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Google Nest teases something special on Monday

Google Nest teases something special on Monday

Home-centric devices have become more relevant and more useful these days, with everyone stuck at home most of the time. From laptops to mobile devices to smart speakers and smart displays, smart devices at home have experienced a surge in demand that some may have even had difficulty supplying. Google might be trying to take advantage of that rise in popularity and has promised something special coming from its Nest smart home brand, maybe even a new Nest Home speaker with a rather unique design.

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Nest Aware subscribers get free Nest Hub offer, codes finally working

Nest Aware subscribers get free Nest Hub offer, codes finally working

During these weeks or even months of practically being forced to stay at home, it's not unusual for companies to offer some free or extended trial period to customers to do their part in keeping them sane and healthy. Google, however, seemed to have gone over and beyond by offering free devices instead, like free Nest Mini speakers to YouTube Premium subscribers. Now it's doing the same with a Nest Hub smart display but you need to have jumped on the new Nest Aware subscription to qualify.

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Google Assistant may soon confirm some purchases by voice

Google Assistant may soon confirm some purchases by voice

Remember the almost comical incident more than three years ago when Amazon Echo speakers started ordering dollhouses because a TV anchor said so? Those things are long behind us and people have been less than enthusiastic about the prospect of making big orders without any visual confirmation from their phone at the very least. But for a certain class of users, that may be the only kind of interaction they may be able to make which is why Google is now testing an accessibility feature that would let some users confirm purchases by voice alone.

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Google Home smart speaker deal sees price tag plummet

Google Home smart speaker deal sees price tag plummet

Google's first-generation Google Home smart speaker has had an unexpected price cut, with the Assistant-powered gadget now matching the Google Nest Mini in a promotion. Launched back in late 2016, the original Google Home may have looked like an air freshener, but it actually kick-started the company's growing smart home line-up.

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Google Home app finally has a “Hey, Google” sensitivity slider

Google Home app finally has a “Hey, Google” sensitivity slider

As smart and somewhat useful smart speakers and smart assistants have become, they have also become good for one unintended purpose. They have sometimes become the butt of jokes when citing comical anecdotes about smart speakers suddenly butting into conversations. They have also become sources of horror stories about unintentionally recording or, worse, sending audio clips that were not even meant to be heard by others. Fortunately, Google is now letting users decide how well or how hard Google Assistant will hear them with a new setting.

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Google Assistant smart speakers can now directly play audiobook samples

Google Assistant smart speakers can now directly play audiobook samples

If you own a Google Nest or Google Home smart speaker and use it to listen to audiobooks while at home, you'll find the product's latest support particularly useful: samples. As of now, Google Nest and Home speakers can be used to download and listen to audiobook samples before the user purchases the product, giving them a chance to hear the audio and decide if they want the entire book.

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Nest Hub Media View makes managing smart speakers easier

Nest Hub Media View makes managing smart speakers easier

The Google Nest Hub, previously the Google Hub, is designed to be the nerve center of the smart home. As far as giving information and controlling bulbs go, that's pretty much the case. The one thing it ironically doesn't do well is being the conductor to your multiple smart speakers. That is finally a thing of the past thanks to an update that brings all that control and knowledge at your fingertips, though not exactly at your verbal command.

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Google Home speakers quietly lose Guest Mode feature

Google Home speakers quietly lose Guest Mode feature

It appears that Google has quietly removed the Guest Mode feature from its Google Home speakers. Users have noticed that the feature is no longer available for the speakers within the Google Home app, though it remains available for Chromecast devices (for now). Seemingly underscoring the permanent nature of this change is Google's removal of its Support pages related to the now-defunct feature.

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Hulu finally adds voice control for Chromecast and Google smart displays

Hulu finally adds voice control for Chromecast and Google smart displays

Live and on-demand streaming service Hulu has finally added voice control support for Chromecast and Google's smart displays. With this new capability, Hulu users can tell Google Assistant to play a particular show or movie on their preferred Google smart display device or television with Chromecast. This marks the latest expansion of Google voice control support with Hulu joining competitors like Netflix and CBS.

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Amazon Echo smart speakers’ sales surpass Google Home by a wide margin

Amazon Echo smart speakers’ sales surpass Google Home by a wide margin

Smart speakers were, at a time, the hot thing in the tech market but they've become so common now that you almost don't hear much about them in between product launches and privacy scandals. You might be surprised then, that they have apparently grown by almost 45% since the third quarter last year. And, depending on which team you're rooting for, you might be surprised or not that Google is the biggest loser in that market.

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Google Home update bug is bricking some smart speakers [Update]

Google Home update bug is bricking some smart speakers [Update]

Some Googe Home users are reporting issues with a recent software update that has bricked some smart speakers. According to impacted device owners, the update results in perpetually illuminated LED lights on the updated Google Home or Google Home Mini speaker, something they aren't able to fix by factory resetting the device. Google has acknowledged the issue, but it appears that users who aren't covered by warranty may be out of luck.

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Spotify’s Google Home Mini promo is back: Here’s what you should know

Spotify’s Google Home Mini promo is back: Here’s what you should know

Around this time last year, Spotify decided to run a promotion in which it handed out Google Home Mini speakers to Premium Family subscribers. That promotion is back this year, but this time around, Spotify is expanding eligibility. Not only are Family plan subscribers eligible to receive a Google Home Mini, but those on individual Premium accounts are eligible as well.

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