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Tech Junkie Review: Google Nest Hub Max

Smart home speakers have become so common in 2019 that I’m surprised when someone DOESN’T have one in their home.  Next, smarthome screens!  Enter the new Google Nest Hub Max.  This is the latest smart screen from Google with a larger screen and a camera built-in.  I took it for a test.

Data pix.

My first thoughts - this thing is big!  In a good way.  Where the previous Google Nest Hub was about the size of a small tablet, this is more the size of a full-sized tablet with a 10" screen.  If you've had any experience with Google Assistant on a phone or Google Home device then you'll feel right at home (pun intended) with the Hub Max.  It listens for the Hey Google keyword and responds to your questions and commands.  Google Assistant just keeps getting better.  It's the center of your smarthome, your recipe assistant, your music player, YouTube or YouTube TV viewer and so much more.

Let's talk about the speakers built into this thing.  WOW!  I was blown away at how good it sounded.  Frankly the footprint isn't huge and I didn't expect anything amazing.  I was surprised!  Everyone said the same thing, "is that sound coming from that thing!?!"  Well done Google.  It's a legit speaker in addition to everything else it does.

The built-in camera is the biggest change from the previous Google smart display.  In fact, in my review of the smaller hub my biggest complaint was the lack of camera.  So I was happy to see Google added one to the Max.  It just makes sense.  It's the perfect kitchen video calling device.  In my tests, the Max worked great using Duo to call friends and family.  Duo is a great video calling app and works on both Android and iPhone but some people might want another option.  On the Google Nest Hub Max there is no other option for video calling.  It's all Google Duo.

What's even cooler is that Google also lets you use the camera as a Nest cam.  This means your kitchen or living room hub can double as a full-blown home security camera.  It's an added bonus that would alone cost a cool $200!  Well done.

The google Nest Hub Max is the 2nd gen hub that many of us expected and hoped for.  The awesome speakers, larger screen and addition of a camera make it the complete package.  The built-in camera doubles as a Nest cam and easily makes it well worth the $230 price tag.  The Nest Hub Max is a fantastic smart screen and perfect for anyone who is already embedded in the Google Home ecosystem.  You can buy the Google Next Hub Max at most stores or directly from Google.

 

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