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Google Home Hub Review-Outstanding Hardware for Google's Quick Smart Display Program

Google homepage. Ron Amadeo The back piece has a mute switch and a volume tab. Ron Amadeo Do not worry…

The latest entry to Google’s home ecosystem is called the Google homepage. Home Hub marries a screen with Google Assistant-controlled voice commands, allowing users to call recipes, use smart home controls or watch YouTube videos.

We’ve seen this software before. There is currently a whole device category out there called “Google Smart Displays”. As with Android, Google makes the software, and a number of OEMs then add the software to their devices. Google Smart Display devices have so far been done by LG and JBL, and we made a complete review of the Lenovo Smart Display. Unlike Android, Google currently has full control over the Smart Display software, regardless of who manufactures the hardware. This means that each device has essentially the same user interface and features, in addition to the standard technology, the trick of new features exclusive to new devices.

But with Google launching its own version of the Google Smart Display hardware, it’s definitely the device to buy if you’re on the market. Hemnavet happens to be cheaper, only $ 150, and better than any third party devices. In addition, it has a great new display feature.

The Hardware-Google Design At Best

SCREEN 1024 × 600 7 “LCD (169.5ppi) [19659020] OS Cast platform with Google Smart Display- software
CPU AMLogic S905D2 (four Cortex A53 kernels)
NETWORK 802.11b / g / n / ac, Bluetooth 5.0
DC Power, Micro USB
] Size 67.3 x 178.5 x 118 mm
WEIGHT 480g (16.9oz)

Home Hub follows Google’s soft design motif to a T. Hela the screen has a bubbly roundness – you will not find a single sharp corner anywhere. The screen’s corners and frames are rounded, the colored back panel curves around the sides of the device, and the base is a rounded enclosed speaker covered with the same sock-like Fabric like Google Home Speaker. Home Hub is cute. You want to download and hold it, even if you do not.

Sk rm may not look like much on a special sheet, with only a 1024 × 600 resolution spread over a seven-inch panel, but it looks good. ~ 170 ppi sounds like you get NES graphics compared to a smartphone, but the device is meant to be used on a table, usually at the arm’s length. At that distance, pictures are amazing. It is in the same density area as a desktop screen, which is good.

However, it’s really about new ambient light and color sensor embedded in the front. With this extra sensor and a well-written screen, the display changes color temperature and brightness to match the environment. Some other devices do something like this (iOS True Tone will keep in mind), but with auto brightness enabled, the home theater display is set so that it’s actually so dim it’s discrete while it’s on.

Every other touchscreen device that I own constantly blows white / blue light into the house, but the Home Hub screen is dim enough so that it does not emit light at all. It’s still readable, but the “glare” of an electrical device completely disappears, and it does not catch your eye just the way all other screens do. The screen is almost halfway between a paper-like e-ink display and blaring LCD screen, it feels like an absolute breakthrough. I have never seen a display that pops into the background like this.

You can adjust the screen brightness to work just the way you like it too. There are alternatives to keep the aggressive dimming all the time instead of when the screen is available – which I highly recommend – and you can set how light or dim you want to be automatic brightness. You get several surrounding modes to choose from, and you can have the screen shut down completely if you want.

Display and Speakers

When you look at the 7-inch Google Home Hub next to the 10-inch Lenovo Smart Display, I strongly prefer the smaller form factor. The Google Smart Display interface is designed for this smaller screen, with buttons of appropriate size and readable text. The UI on the 10-inch Lenovo screen is gigantic. It seems that it is supposed to be read from the whole room, but as a touchscreen device it does not make much sense. The smaller footprint of the Home Hub makes it feel like a good fit for a coffee or nightstand, while the Lenovo Smart Display’s shelf size is good for a spacious kitchen counter and not many other places. Even the eight-inch Lenovo display has a big footprint compared to home entertainment thanks to the speaker placement.

The Home Hub speaker is especially better than a Google Home Mini, which is a relief. Nevertheless, it’s missing the trumpy base of a regular Google Home, which means you have some decisions to do with your homecoming. Want a touchscreen, or do you want better sound from a regular Google home? Home Hub is able to pump the sound in all directions very well, including the front. Fabric on the back should not be used as an indication of where the sound comes out. Home Hub (and now other smart screens) can also connect to a speaker group so your home theater and Google Home speakers can all pump music in harmony.

Above the screen are a few microphones and a center sensor cluster that holds brightness and color. On the back you will get a microphone switch, a physical volume switch and a round DC plug. At the bottom is a rubber pad, which makes a good job of docking the touch screen to your table top.

Software, cost saving and tinkering

Google Home Hub takes an odd departure from other Google Smart Displays in terms of software. While the interface is identical to the smart monitors from Lenovo, JBL and others, the basic operating system for the homegrown Google Cast platform is. Other Smart Displays were the launching platform for Android Things. So while something like the Lenovo Smart Display can be seen as a downloaded smartphone, Home Hub is more a funneled Chromecast. My only guess about why Google did this to keep costs down. The Cast platform should have lower system requirements than Android Cases.

In terms of cost savings, the Google Home Hub does not have a video call camera, which has so far been a standard feature on Google Smart Displays. Google says that this will make people more comfortable with the device, but it will also lower the price. If the Home Hub had an app platform that made the camera useful across a variety of video call services, a camera bar could be seen as a negative. But considering the camera, it was only useful for Google Duo, I will not miss it a bit.

The homecoming has a different oddity: if you’re a tinker, you can drop the rubber base with a screwdriver, revealing a hidden Micro USB port! The original Google home also came with a Micro USB port, but just like at home, it was used for service only, according to Google. While the usual Smart Display software is running, the USB port is idle, so it must be turned on in some way. Apparently, Google’s secret Fuchsia OS team has gone home and made it an official Fuchsia test device. Nobody outside Google has been thinking about how to do this work yet.

Overall, the hardware is amazing, and Google did a fantastic job that built this for $ 150.

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