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How to factory reset a Google Home Mini

With great sound, responsive microphones, and a plethora of features ranging from smart home control to the ability to act as a language interpreter, the Google Assistant-powered Home Mini gives you a ton of bang for your buck.

The current-generation Home Mini, which released in October 2019, costs around $50 retail. But you can often get a deal and purchase the device for around $30. The Home Mini is an amazing player for any-sized smart home, and first- and third-party developers have created all kinds of interactive skills and features that are powered by the ultra-responsive Google Assistant.

Google Nest Mini on wall
John Velasco / Digital Trends

In spite of the value, with all of the new smart speakers and displays coming onto the market, you might be staring at your Home Mini and thinking to yourself, “I wish I had a smart display,” or even, “I wish I had an Alexa device instead.”

If you’re thinking about swapping out your Home Mini for one of Google’s larger smart speakers or displays, or for another brand of device entirely, you can get a few bucks in cash or trade-in value out of your old hardware. Before you go trading gear in, you’re going to want to factory reset your speaker. We’ll teach you how to perform a full reset of your Home Mini, and also offer some tips on how to net a decent chunk of change from your old speaker.

Performing a factory reset

There are currently two generations of the Google Home Mini. If you’re not sure which one you own, flip the speaker over. If there’s a wall-mount screw slot, it’s a second-gen model. If there’s no screw slot at all, it’s a first-gen.

For second-generation models 

On the side of your device, you should see a microphone on/off switch. First, flip that to the off position. The LED lights on the top of your speaker should pulse orange. Press and hold the center of the Nest Mini, right where those lights are located. You’ll hear a chime once the reset is complete.

After about five seconds, your device will automatically begin the factory reset process. Continue to hold for about 10 seconds. You should then hear a chime, indicating the reset process is complete.

For first-generation models

For the first-gen Mini, the reset button is located below the power cord on the bottom of your device. Press and hold the reset button for about 15 seconds to factory reset your device. Similar to a second-gen reset, you’ll hear a chime once your factory wipe is complete.

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

Do note that a factory reset cannot be performed with the Google Home app. For both generations, the only way to perform a reset is with the buttons on the speaker. Completing a factory reset will clear the data from the device, and it will get the speaker ready for a new user.

Just need to reboot?

If you’re trying to reboot your Home Mini instead of performing a full-on factory reset, you can try a simple power cycle. Begin by unplugging the device, leaving it unplugged for about one minute, and then plugging it back in. You can also use the Google Home app and go to Settings > Device Settings, pressing the “More” button (the three dots), to select Reboot.

Selling or trading in your Google Home Mini

Google Home Mini
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

You can also trade-in your Google Home Mini at a few different retailers. For example, both Target and Walmart offer about $4 for a working Google Home Mini. Selling or trading in your Home Mini through these big-box sites helps make the transaction seamless, and you can quickly get your money. You won’t get as much money as you would have if you sold the device directly to another person, but you may prefer a quick transaction rather than more cash.

You can sell your Home Mini directly to another person on sites like Swappa, eBay, or LetGo. The average sale price on Swappa is around $20, so you’ll get more than double the cash you would at Target or Walmart. However, the extra money comes with a bit more effort because you have to create a listing and wait for an interested party to arrive as a buyer. Regardless, if you’re willing to put in some extra work, you can make a few extra dollars.

Another option for getting rid of your device is simply giving it away. You can donate it and potentially reap some benefit come tax season.

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