Skip to main content

The Nest Cam IQ will soon transform into a Google Assistant

Nest Cam IQ sitting on a desk next to car keys and books
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Recently, Google added the Home Mini and Home Max to its Google Home lineup, but you don’t need to shell out $49, $399, or $129 to take advantage of Google Assistant — provided you have a $299 Nest Cam IQ. On Wednesday, February 21, Nest updated the security camera so you can ask it questions starting with “OK, Google.”

This update comes on the heels of Google’s recent announcement that Nest is joining its hardware team. When Google bought the company in 2014, Nest remained a separate entity under the Alphabet umbrella. The move was aimed at making “Nest an integral part of Google’s big bet on hardware,”  Rick Osterloh, the head of Google’s hardware division, wrote in a blog post. As of now, the update will only affect the indoor version of the Nest Cam IQ, not the outdoor version of Dropcams. (Nest said it’s protecting your privacy and safety by not offering Google Assistant on the outdoor version. You definitely don’t want the nightmarish neighbor children being able to turn your lights on and off from your porch.)

The update takes advantage of the Cam’s built-in speaker and microphone. While you’ll be able to control your smart-home devices, get weather updates, and ask it Google-able questions, the camera can’t play music or podcasts. You can ask it to cast audio on compatible speakers, though. The Cam IQ also won’t let you make or receive phone calls.

To turn on the Google Assistant feature, you need to open your Nest app, tap your product > Settings  > Add Google Assistant. In that same place, you can temporarily stop the feature or disable it altogether.

In addition, Nest is adding a $5 per month Nest Aware subscription, which gives users five days of continuous recording. Before, users could only purchase $10 and $30 plans for 10 and 30 days’ worth of video, respectively. Those that have Nest Aware will also be able to set “person alerts” in Activity Zones to recognize the difference between humans and other moving objects, so you receive fewer unimportant motion alerts.

While it’s nice that the Nest Cam IQ is getting this update, it doesn’t change the fact that you can get a camera like the Arlo Q for $100 less and get seven days of free cloud storage. Then you can get a couple of Google Home Minis and at least be able to listen to some podcasts.

Editors' Recommendations

Jenny McGrath
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Jenny McGrath is a senior writer at Digital Trends covering the intersection of tech and the arts and the environment. Before…
The most common Google Nest Mini problems and how to fix them
A coral Google Nest Mini mounted on a brick wall.

The Google Nest Mini (2nd Gen) is one of the best smart speakers of 2024. Despite its low price, the Nest Mini gives you full access to Google Assistant, provides surprisingly great audio for a device its size, and is compact enough to fit nearly anywhere in your home. Whether you want to listen to music, dish out commands to other smart devices, or check the news, the Nest Mini can do it all.

However, the Nest Mini isn't without its faults. Setting up and using the smart speaker is typically a straightforward, hassle-free experience. But like all electronics, some owners have noticed strange issues when performing simple tasks — such as connectivity problems or an unresponsive unit.

Read more
Ring Battery Doorbell Pro vs. Nest Doorbell: Which is the better video doorbell?
The Ring Battery Doorbell Pro installed near a door.

The Ring Battery Doorbell Pro is one of the newest video doorbells on the market, offering premium features along with the simplicity of a battery power source. It's a fancy piece of smart home tech -- but how does it stack up to the always-popular Nest Doorbell? The two video doorbells bring many of the same features to your front door, though there are a few key differences you'll want to be aware of before making a purchase.

Here's everything you need to know about the Ring Battery Doorbell Pro and Nest Doorbell -- including a look at their installation process, standout features, and pricing details -- before adding one of them to your smart home.

Read more
Echo Show 8 vs. Nest Hub: Does Amazon or Google offer the best smart display?
Google Nest Hub 2nd Gen on table.

Anyone in the market for a reasonably priced smart display has probably stumbled across the Echo Show 8 and Nest Hub. Both clock in at under $150 (often less when on sale) yet provide homes with many of the same features found on premium alternatives like the Nest Hub Max and Echo Show 10.

But is the Echo Show 8 better than the Nest Hub? And what exactly is the difference between these two smart displays? Here's a comprehensive look at both to help you decide which one to bring into your smart home.
Pricing and design

Read more