Google, like some other tech companies, is having a strange year when it comes to new product launches. It’s not really a secret that a new Nest speaker – aka the Google Home 2 – is on the way, though, so here’s what we know about it so far.
The search giant might have had to cancel it’s Google I/O event but since then has really only launched the Pixel Buds outside the US, leaving fans waiting for gadgets like the Pixel 4a and a new Android TV-powered Chromecast dongle dubbed Sabrina.
Over on the Nest side of things it looks like Google will launch a new smart speaker to replace the original Google Home, which launched in 2016.
When is the new Google Nest speaker launching?
We say the smart speaker is no secret because its existence became known back in June. Sources told 9to5Google that the upcoming device is codenamed ‘Prince’ and would be a new ‘standard Nest-branded smart speaker’.
You might think of it as the Google Home 2, but the firm has been moving a lot of its smart home branding to Nest.
A final name hasn’t been leaked but ‘Google Nest Home’ would work fine.
When it will launch is still anyone’s guess at the moment. Google teased some sort of announcement for 13 July which looked like it could be the new speaker, but turned out to be a deal on Nest Mini.
The original Home has been discontinued in the US, which suggests the launch can’t be too far off.
A launch this summer alongside the Pixel 4a is tipped. This keeps getting moved by 3 August is the latest date on offer via Jon Prosser.
How much will the new Nest speaker cost?
The original Google Home speaker costs £89 (although originally £129) so we’d expect the replacement to be in a similar ballpark.
That’s also how much an Amazon Echo 3 costs, which is a key rival, so Google is unlikely to stray far from that figure.
The new Nest speaker is being heralded as a rival to the Sonos One, which costs £199 but Google will likely undercut this price by a long way.
What are the new Nest speaker features?
We can get a reasonable idea of what the Nest speaker for 2020 will be like as a leaked set of images showing the ‘GXCA6’ device popped up online via Android TV Guide.
Recently certified by the FCC, here is our first look at GXCA6, the new @Google Nest Speaker, replacing the original Google Home. 😁 pic.twitter.com/Ltp1quPFqc
— Android TV Guide (@androidtv_rumor)
July 9, 2020
Google then responded unusually by providing US media with an official image (at the top) for the Nest speaker along with a short video (below).
It shows that the speaker looks rather different to the original Home with a completely different shape and a fabric coating similar to the Nest Mini.
Like it’s little brother, the speaker will have four LEDs hidden under the mesh to show things like volume level and when the Google Assistant is listening. Whether it will have touch sensitive controls is unconfirmed but we would guess it does.
On the back it has the usual hole for a power cable and a switch to turn off the microphones.
In terms of colours Google uses some interesting names but back in the real world it looks like it will arrive in mint green, pink or light blue/grey.
Google’s official video might be short but does show that you can pair two Nest speakers together to create a stereo setup and use your voice for control, of course.
Interestingly, the final part with the girl bringing the speaker to someone and asking “what is this for?” suggests that it could be battery powered and therefore portable.
This would be a new feature as previous models all need to be plugged into the mains. If it is portable then it would make sense to offer Bluetooth connectivity much like the Sonos Move.