On 5th September 2019, Google launched its new Nest Hub Max after it had announced it for the first time in May — and it adds an “eye” to its artificial intelligence. It’s the tech giant’s latest take on smart home control.
Google Nest Hub Max does much more than just listening to you or staring at you. It does both.
Its advanced face recognition technology can identify you when you are walking across your hall. As soon as it sees you, it greets you with a cheery “Good Morning!” or “Hello” or “Good Afternoon”. This feature called the “Face Match” opens up huge possibilities in terms of personalized and customized services.
Not only that, you can control the Nest Hub Max using gestures. For example, you can play, pause or resume your music by just holding up your hand. The wide-angle lens in the Nest Hub Max tracks your hand movement and scans your entire room for your face, which might seem a bit too intrusive to some people. It can even recognize every member of the family if you let it.
Now, there are obviously a number of benefits. For instance, if you’re not home and you want to remind your room mate to take out the garbage what do you do? You just leave a message on the Nest Hub Max. It will remind your room mate as soon as it sees his/ her face. And if you just happen to leave your security camera on, you can also see his/ her reaction to your message!
Google Nest Hub Max As A Smart Home Device
Google Nest Hub Max enables you to do a lot of things all-in-one for your smart home — monitor your home, make video calls, watch YouTube, leave video messages, and access your Google accounts. You can control your smart home devices like TVs, lights, thermostats, game consoles, speakers, locks, and other smart home gadgets using your voice or hand gestures.
You can keep connected with your family and friends and stay on track “hands-free” no matter where they are — across the street or across the country. Worrying about security? Nest Hub Max will automatically alert you triggered by familiar faces and using clever motion detections.
The camera feature is the coolest and comes in as quite handy. You can easily video chat with your partner while you’re cooking — moving from the kitchen stove to the refrigerator. The camera automatically follows you wherever you go and even zoom in your face!
It does not end here. This smart home display has a couple more camera-powered tricks up its sleeve. It offers excellent personalization. For example, as soon as you approach your Nest Hub Max, it recognizes you and serves you your personal messages, calendar alerts, reminders and anything specific to you.
Google Nest Hub Max Promises Privacy
Google says that all the camera personalization through facial recognition happens on the local device (“users end”) only. It means, your Nest Hub Max does not send your personalized experiences (videos or images) either from quick gestures or from Face Match to Google. Therefore, it protects the user’s privacy and enables a speedy response at the same time.
Amidst all of the smart home features, Google Nest Hub Max doesn’t forget to respect your privacy. If you prefer some privacy, then just turn off the privacy switch and it automatically turns off your camera and mic.
Moreover, whenever the device camera is turned on, recording or sending video footage, it automatically gives out a clear signal using a green light as a visual indicator. For “privacy-conscious” people, Google Nest Hub Max can be the ideal smart home device.
Should We Trust It?
Google wants us to forget the incident that happened with Nest Secure earlier this year. Before even disclosing that those devices had microphones, Google suddenly told us we can use Google Assistant voice commands. It inevitably made everyone suspicious about whether the tech giant was secretly collecting audio from its users.
However, it seems that Google has left its past behind. Now it firmly believes in it’s privacy protection features and wants us to believe them too.
For this reason, the company banned all the non-Google Assistant devices to integrate into the Nest Hub Max. As a result, if you want to use Google Nest Hub Max, you have to have a Google Account.
It is mainly because this way all our information stays safe, as Google promises. However, many sources are skeptical about whether Google will secretly collect user information and share it with partners or the government.
While certain sources may raise privacy concerns against Google Nest Hub Max, the tech giant has promised maximum transparency from their side. In addition to that, Google now lists all its device components beforehand — including those that are still not active or enabled.
Google Nest Hub Max is a lot better as a smart home device — with powerful speakers, larger display, and a cool camera with a host of other features as well. Most importantly, we should appreciate the “privacy button” feature that lets us turn the mic and camera on and off.
The “Face Match” and clever motion tracking features are also worthy enough to put them to some effective use. You can easily swipe down and control your smart home gadgets — dial up the AC temperature, switch off the light, or check in on the security camera or doorbell.
Google Nest Hub Max can be an instant win in your household — streaming your endless family memories, YouTube videos or even your favorite TV episodes, serving as a photo frame and a smart speaker!