Market Insight

Google's New Home Mini & Max Deepen Battle with Amazon at Both Ends of the Smart Speaker Market; Apple's HomePod Faces Increasingly-challenging Launch

October 05, 2017  | Subscribers Only

Paul Erickson Paul Erickson Senior Research Analyst, Service Provider Technology

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Google’s Pixel 2 smartphone launch event brought the announcement of two new smart speakers.

The first, is the $49 Google Home Mini, featuring a small, rounded, design-neutral form factor, and three color choices. The device incorporates far-field voice recognition, and inherits the same slate of Google Assistant, Chromecast Built-in, and calling capabilities as its larger Google Home stablemate.

The device will be available at retail October 19th in all seven countries that Google Home is currently available in.

The second, the $399 Home Max, also possesses the same aforementioned capabilities, utilizes four drivers (dual 2-way configuration), and has twenty times the sound output of the original Google Home. Home Max features Google’s new AI-driven Smart Sound technology, automatically tuning the speaker dynamically to the acoustics of the room it’s in and adjusting volume based on time of day, ambient noise level, situational context, and other factors. Home Max can either stream music directly, or receive audio input from line input, Bluetooth, and Chromecast Built-in-compatible casts.

Google Home Max will launch first in the US in December, with 12 free months of YouTube Red included.

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