Google Hub Max Review: How To Use Google Hub Max

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The other day I was watching Finch, the latest Tom Hanks movie, on Apple TV + (that’s very sad, in case you were wondering). Besides making me sob, I would have liked to have had a robot that could bring me food when I wanted. And while we’re not there yet, there are certainly some smart home devices out there today that can help tremendously with other tedious tasks. Tech brands are finding new ways to incorporate even more convenient features into their smart products (e.g. Facebook Portal, Amazon Echo Show, Eve Door & Window Sensor, etc.) that allow us to communicate and control little almost everything. Personally, I have had an Amazon Echo Show for a few years and use it frequently. But I recently found myself compelled to try Google’s new Nest Hub Max because I had heard that it could help me cook recipes in the kitchen and control all of my smart home devices just by using my phone. voice.

I was lucky enough to get my hands on one a few months ago, and it may or may not have made me say goodbye to my Echo Show. If you’re curious as to why, read on to learn more about what the Google Nest Hub Max does and how it has helped me make the most of my time in the kitchen.

Snapshot

What it is: Google’s Nest Hub Max is a smart home device designed to help you navigate and manage your tasks throughout the day, whether it’s cooking, making lists or setting reminders.

What it costs: $ 229

Why it’s great: It’s a bigger version of the brand’s Nest Hub, with more powerful speakers and a built-in Nest camera. It’s like having a personal assistant on call at all times. Overall the user experience is quite good and it is easy to interact smoothly with the device through the digital voice assistant and the screen user interface. Plus, I like the way it personalizes its display to suit who’s using it using facial recognition technology, which you can turn on or off at any time.

Which would make it even better: I would like it to be compatible with a wider selection of streaming apps so that I didn’t have to depend on my phone or the voice assistant to search for a specific video. Plus, while you can turn the camera off, there’s no real physical privacy shutter.

About the product

Google’s Nest Hub Max is the upgraded version of Nest Hub, a smart home device like Google Home but equipped with a 10-inch HD display (similar to an iPad) and a built-in camera, which unlocks a lot more features. . Like its counterpart, it was designed to help you streamline your day-to-day tasks by providing you with your very own voice-activated digital home assistant. You can use it to play music from apps like Spotify and Pandora and it will show all the information you might need on demand on its screen including videos from streaming services like YouTube, Netflix, Hulu and Disney +. With its new integrated camera, it can also be used to make or receive video calls or as a security camera.

Quality Control

Like its previous iteration, the Google Assistant helps you navigate through all of the device’s features smoothly. It activates when you say “hey Google” and lets you control almost any function just using your voice. The upgraded 10-inch screen makes everything look better with its high-definition display with a resolution of 1280 x 800 (this proves incredibly useful when trying to follow a particularly detailed recipe). Another cool feature? Its stereo speakers are way better than the previous Nest Hub and my Amazon Echo Show.

The built-in camera also enables a suite of new features, including gesture controls (which let you pause or resume reading), a security camera with a 127-degree field of view, and video calls. It is also equipped with facial recognition or “Face Match” technology, as Google calls it, which allows the Hub Max to “see” who is in front of the screen and personalize the information accordingly, such as reminders. ‘they have defined, to-do lists and upcoming calendar events.

How to use it

To set up your Hub Max, you need to download the Google Home app on your phone, sign in to your Google account, and connect to your home Wi-Fi. As you follow the steps, it will ask you if you want to enable Face Match. If you choose to enable it, you will need to take photos of your face on the Google Home app to send them to the Hub Max (you can include up to six people / faces from your household). According to Google, these photos will only remain on your device and will not be sent to the company or stored in the cloud. After that, you can start to connect to your streaming services and other accessories in your home that are compatible with Google Home. For example, I connected my smart bulbs to all of my lights so that I can tell the Google Assistant to turn them on and off whenever I need them. I’m not gonna lie, it makes me feel like samantha from delighted.

One of my favorite features has to be the recipe suggestions and step by step instructions. When I have a craving for a specific ingredient or food, I ask Google Assistant to show me recipes that contain it and it picks up lots of options from sites like Food Network, Delish, Food52, etc. When I choose a recipe that I want to use, I tell Google Assistant to start cooking and it immediately starts reading step one, but doesn’t move forward until I say “hey Google, next step”. If you forget a measurement or other detail, you can always ask Google without missing the stage you are currently at. I’ve always cooked recipes by following the steps on my phone which can be so awkward and complicated as I have to move my phone around and clean my hands before grabbing it again to read the next direction. You can also use this feature to make your shopping list by asking Google what ingredients are in a recipe that you want to cook, which I also find very effective.

Other than that, I mainly use it to check the weather every morning, listen to music and podcasts, and to monitor my dog ​​with the camera when I get out of my apartment (this has been incredibly helpful in gauging his progress. facing separation anxiety). All of these features can also be managed from your phone using the Google Home app, which comes in handy when you’re away from home and want to turn on some lights before you arrive.

The results

After using this product for months, I can say that I really like having it in my house. I think it’s so helpful in little ways that make such a big difference throughout the day. Do I care about my privacy and how the data is stored? I was at the beginning, but after learning how to erase my information, I felt more confident about it. However, I wish the camera had a physical privacy shutter just for peace of mind. I would also like full control of the apps right from the screen. Right now, you can only control them with your phone and use the voice assistant to play a specific video, which can be tricky as you need the exact name of the content you’re looking for.

Our verdict

I think $ 229 is a decent price to pay for such a great product. The quality of the display and user experience stands out from any other smart device I have seen or used before. Personally, I like having it in the kitchen and / or living room. In the kitchen, it’s handy not only for following a recipe, but also for reading podcasts or watching something while cooking or cleaning dishes. In the living room, where I work most often, I use it to listen to music, ask Google questions, check the weather, and for the security camera when I’m away. If your goal is to make your home a lot smarter, I think this is the right product to start.


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