Google Nest Hub Gen 2 on a bookshelf

Hands-on: Google Nest Hub 2nd Gen launched in Ireland

The Google Nest Hub 2nd Gen has launched in Ireland, and while our review will come in a couple of weeks, we can share our initial hands-on with the device. Like the Google Pixel 5, this is definitely another compact and beautiful device. If you’re interested in picking one up, you can buy one of these in Ireland from the Google Store for €99.99! With a ton of smart features, this device could well be the heart of your smart home.

Buy the Google Nest Hub 2nd Gen

Google sent us the Google Nest Hub 2nd Gen device for review on the 6th of May, 2021. They did not have any input into the contents of this article.

The Google Nest Hub 2nd Gen is a robust and compact smart display

When not in use, the Google Nest Hub makes a pretty great timepiece, made better by Google Photos integration. While I haven’t configured it on my unit yet, you can integrate it to work with a Google Photos album of your choice to use it as a smart photo frame when it’s idle. If you don’t enable that feature, though, it’ll just turn on a clock at all times for when it’s idle. Swiping over to the right, however, unearths smart home controls, apps, and even games. Sadly, I couldn’t get any games to display, though.

The Google Nest Hub is basically just a Google Home Mini with a screen, though there are some extra features too. You might notice in the photo above that there is the ability to collect sleep data. Google makes it very clear during setup that it does not use a camera or any kind of recording device to track your sleep – instead, it uses Soli radar, a feature that debuted on the Google Pixel 4. While I haven’t gotten to test this out yet, the idea is that it can do what a smartwatch does, but using radar instead, and can even suggest ways to try and improve your sleep. It can detect if you cough and sneeze frequently in your sleep, and it can also detect if the room might be too warm.

Finally, the Google Nest Hub uses a speaker that wraps around from the front to the back to play sound. I’ve been using it for watching YouTube videos and listening to music on Spotify. The audio quality is very good for a smart display and greatly impressed me given the price range that this device is launching in.  If you already use any of Google’s smart home products, then this will slot in nicely with the rest of what you have. Be sure to stay tuned for the full review, and be sure to let us know what you think about it!

An Irish technology fanatic with a BSc in Computer Science. Lover of smartphones, cybersecurity, and Counter-Strike. You can contact me at adam.conway@irishtech.ie.
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