Hit and miss
Manually the switches work ok, connecting to the TV will only work some times. Chrome cast is a pain. I did a lot of work and is not paying off. I ask for a specific song and it only works on a single speaker, if I am using a group of speakers, google plays what ever it wants. I got three chrome cast and they were fine at first but after a few weeks voice commands to chrome cast stoped working on all three. Google says it doesn’t recognize that device, I reset to factory, start all over and nothing. I am getting board of this I am thinking of going back to apple TV. What a waste of money. I have 5 nest cams and they connect and disconnect constantly, that problem came after google took over. I am angry about that security problem. I tried everything to have the system recognize only my voice so people couldn’t open my garage or my front door, that does not work. I even had a google tech help me set that up, thats not safe, anyone who knows what I named the door can simply ask google loudly through my glass window or glass door and it opens anything. Google is not safe . I regret all the money spent on this worthless system.
You learn more by testing
I honestly wasn't expecting much since I stayed at a home that had Alexa. I genuinely love the Google home so much. It's easy to maneuver and I like that it resumes from where you left off if you accidentally stop it.
As for improvements, I'd love more options for news (especially a astrology and astronomy and Broadway based one) and to be able to read the full description of each news option somehow. Perhaps a transcript of the news as well to read along. I'd like it if you could go through your past questions/requests to the Google home as well just so I don't have to repeat myself if it speaks too fast. For lingists I think it would be neat if you could do a bilingual option (I know you can do multiple languages but it wouldn't answer to me when i spoke English even though it was the primary language). It would be nice to practice other languages with the Home's help. Or an option to put topics you want to stay up-to-date on and it will Google search and read the newest articles.
Could be better.
Home mostly works but it still has lots of bugs. It stops playing streams at least once or twice a day. It looses connection to the internet. When I place a phone call, it thinks it is the first time I have used it, and reads me a boring script. It is difficult to manage notifications. A Reminder is easy to miss because it does not include an alarm sound. Although Google has access to my every word, they never seem to push software updates. It drives me crazy that it is not user configurable. If you speak to it it sometimes doesn’t respond, if you yell at it, two speakers respond. If you start a stream on one speaker, there is no way to add a new speaker when you move to a new room. There is no way to group lights and or speaker into a scene, So you have to turn them on one at a time or turn on all lights in a room. There are still limits to wireless switch and bulb configurations on the market. This is not Google’s fault but some smart rocker switches are incompatible with standard cover plates. There is no two gang switch yet. All wireless outlet units stick out of the wall and make the plug hit furniture, etc.
Google home keeps falling short
Compared to Alexa:
(1) home hub doesn’t show the time at night (the “ambient light sensor” turns the screen 100% black) (2) can’t call a specific room (3) can’t play a song without blabbering for a minute about every artist and service involved (4) can’t set family reminders that go off for everyone (5) the hub devices can’t hear anyone speak well (6) google can’t play popular songs like the Lion King (featured in their own commercials) without manual intervention otherwise they play knockoffs (7) will only play white noise for an hour unless specified (8) don’t have a quiet mode so if you ask something at night have to listen to it scream across your house nonsense like “this is what white noise sounds like” (9) assistant only sometimes connects to the devices and when it does it can’t even perform the same tasks (eg play white noise) (10) Hub doesn’t display the time if the hub is doing anything besides nothing which makes it a terrible bedside device -even white noise turns off the clock which is stupid by every measure
Violation of child privacy a real concern
I bought the Google Home for a convenient and fun way to stay connected and try something new. Only after using it for two days did it dawn on me that everything my 5 year old was saying to it was being recorded and stored on Google servers. He loved it. “Hi Google” could have gone on for hours if I let it. I work in software development and decided to look further into where things stand with smart speakers and Child Online Privacy and Protection - COPPA (including the collection of children’s personal information, audio, video and images). Bottom line - I couldn’t find anything addressing it. Some concerns have been raised that might lead to legal action at some point, I also saw articles alluding to future patents that could make the listening tech even more invasive. Imagine ads targeting your kids based on conversations you’ve had with them at dinner. These have somehow been sold into millions of homes with a loophole. For now I decided retire the Google Home. I deleted the multiple voice recordings of my son that had been stored via the Google Home app and can only hope that they are permanently gone from Google servers too.
In response to “kahnpro”...
I know what you’re thinking...😮omg . Same thing I thought when my buddy was doing some browsing(not your typical amateurish cpu skills here i mind you) & reading DEEP into Google’s policies, prefs, and settings and came across the audio stuff. It was frightening at first I’ll admit... Him having random conversations infront of the computer.. 100s even.
I jammed home, got on my pc(I use google everything, i think its the future whether we like it or not). Only to find out
Most of those settings on my pc had been turned off and nothing had been recorded. Its common sense pretty much to read the fine print... and as long as you do with google you're 👌... And i’ll even go one step further. Trust me on this one. They been “known in the past” to get their users backs, and maybe eveb on occasion “look the other way,” when meed be. So my suggestion.. Stick it out.
I love Google home
Google home mini has made my life better. Besides helping me with everything things I constantly find myself going back and saying “Hey google !” Needless to say this device saved my life . If you don’t understand or even care about technology. Then this product is NOT for you. Overprotective parents need to get over themselves and stop making everything a problem . We’re spied on each and every day.. by Google, Microsoft , Sony, etc everyday.. our internet providers are constantly watching us. If you don’t like devices and software that record you then DONT get this product. I don’t say or do anything that would get me in trouble so I have no worries. In the end wether you cut a device or service out to try and protect yourself or your family then you might as well live under a rock.. because your always being watched... Always
I love it.
By Carter Stingel
I have a Google Home Mini, Chromecast, & a Geeni/Merkury Innovations smart outlet. I use all three daily. I just have a few suggestions. 1) Night mode on Chromecast: Filters blue light when videos and other media are playing. In Ambient Mode, the screen turns black or dark gray [decided by the user] and displays the time. The feature could be scheduled like other Google Home nightmode-things. Would be really useful, since I use a Dynex TV in my room as my light source at night. It's also not HDMI-CEC compatible so I can't use Google Assistant to turn it on/off. 2) Action compatibility for IFTT: I know you can use Google Home as a trigger in IFTTT, but I haven't seen it as an action. Actions would include things like Broadcast, changing volume of Home devices, and controlling devices such as smart outlets, Chromecast-s, smart locks, and any other Home-compatible devices in your setup. That's all!
Google Home and its Hub is very beneficial!
Pros: Improved Home app certainly helps a lot! Especially for a Deaf person like myself. I bought the Google Home Hub due to its display to show information I need when I ask, freeing me from looking at the phone’s screen frequently. I use my phone to speak the commands to Google Home Hub, and it responds well from commands or answering my questions with information on display, certainly a wonderful feature!
Cons: sometimes, when I ask a question, it doesn’t show the information, would end up speaking the information, so I had to modify the questions to make the Hub show the information, if it still fails, I use Google Assistant on my phone as an alternative. It can be frustrating sometimes!
Otherwise, it’s huge step for Google to make their products as much as friendly for everyone. Keep it up Google! 👏👏
We’re loving it!
By The "B" family
My husband and I have had our Chrome cast for a hot minute, and we absolutely love the fact since we don’t have a “smart” tv that now it feels as if we do have a “smart “tv with this awesome little device that is hooked up to our tv now....
Its extremely easy to use, especially if you do have kids, which we do, have a son who just moved out, but when he comes and visits us we can have FAMILY movie night and everyone can pick something on whatever app you have and play it from on of our Cell Phone’s!!
I’m just so happy that we invested in the Chromecast, because eventually we may just get rid of Direct, all together!! The Chromecast, is kinda like our 2nd kid that we never had, but now it’s apart of our family forever and brings us joy and happiness in everyone’s life, thus far!! Thanks!!!