Remember back in the day when a fully automated home was the stuff of science fiction? Well, we’ve come a long way. We may not have robot servants yet (we do have robot vacuums) but thanks to smart speakers, you can now switch on a light, play your favorite songs, and even order pizza through voice command. Nowadays, Siri, Google Assistant, and Alexa have become an integral part of the American household just as much as pets. One of the best smart home speakers is the Google Home, and right now you can order it on Walmart for this Columbus Day — $30 off its usual $129 price tag.
The Google Home normally comes in white with a grey base, but for a few more bucks you can get it in orange, purple, or teal fabric. The flat top is touch-sensitive and lights up with multi-colored dots when you summon Google Assistant. You can also use it to change the volume, play or pause music, or turn off an alarm or timer. Inside the speaker are two far-field microphones that have no difficulty receiving your voice commands almost anywhere in your home. Just make sure you place it somewhere in the center. To set it up, simply download the Google Home app on your phone (available on both iOS and Android) and follow the instructions. After that, it would be ready to do your bidding.
This smart speaker is good at figuring out what you’re asking of it. Even if you don’t phrase your questions or commands logically, chances are it will comprehend you. Compared to Alexa, Google Assistant is smarter and more reliable, although we find the prompt “Hey, Google” a bit less personal. She also has a sense of humor (well, the artificial intelligence equivalent of it). Asking her where Carmen Sandiego, the Home replied, “I hear she sneaks around the world. Try Kiev or Carolina.” Cheeky. Plus, eventually Google Assistant will have the ability to answer follow-up questions without having to say “Hey, Google” again.
The Home started out with the limited ability to control smart home devices. Now, it is compatible with roughly 5,000 devices and it’s still growing. It no longer just lets you control bulbs and thermostats. With Google Assistant, you can now switch channels or apps on your smart TV, play any song you want on YouTube or Spotify, and make hands-free phone calls.
Is it good as a music player though? The answer is yes. Though not as sonically impressive as a Bose, Sony, or Sennheiser speaker, the music sounded decent. Don’t crank it up too high though as the music starts to distort at full blast.
The Google Home is a remarkable little digital helper and a good enough music player. Get yours for the incredibly low price of $99 on Walmart this Columbus Day.
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