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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 swap your Google Home Mini for a different product in various stores. Target and Walmart will pay around $4 for a functioning Google Home Mini. The advantage of selling or trading your device at these big-box stores is that it is convenient and quick. You won’t make as much profit as you might if you sold it directly to someone else, but your circumstances might demand a fast transaction instead of more cash.

You can sell your Home Mini to another individual on websites such as Swappa, eBay, or LetGo. Swappa’s average sale price is about $20, so you can bet on making significantly more cash than you would at Target or Walmart. You’ll have to invest some time and energy if you want to see that payoff come to fruition, as you might have to wait a long time before a buyer makes an offer on your listing. If you’re willing to go the extra mile, you can make some more money.

There’s always the option to make your device a tax-deductible donation. That way, even though you are giving it away for free, you can still collect something for it when your taxes come in. 

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