The new Google Nest Hub Max looks a lot like the display formerly known as Google Home Hub — at first glance. The Nest Hub Max has the same general design as its smaller sibling, the same fabric speaker cover on the rear, and the same color scheme. Where the Nest Hub Max’s hardware differs is in the addition of a camera, a larger 10-inch panel, and beefier speakers. These changes open up several new A doors for Google’s smart display series.
Here’s a quick breakdown of the new features found in the Google Nest Hub Max vs Google Nest Hub:
Google Nest Hub Max supports Google Duo video calling
While other Google smart displays already supported video calling via Google Duo, the Google Home Hub didn’t. Thankfully the new 127-degree field-of-view front camera opens up the Hub series to video calling, while also adding a few special additions like auto-framing, letting it automatically zoom in and pan around during a call. This means you can wander around a bit and still stay in frame, perfect for use in places like the Kitchen.
Google Nest Hub Max doubles as a security camera
Perfect for a small room (or even an office?), the Google Nest Hub Max allows you to remotely monitor what’s going on from the Nest app. Just like the Nest Cam you can see event history, enable Home/Away Assist, and even get notifications if motion is detected. The Hub Max is also compatible with the Nest Aware subscription service, letting you get continuous video recording and more.
Get a more personalized experience with Face Match
Personalization isn’t anything new to Google’s smart displays and speakers, but the camera takes things a bit further. The new Face Match feature recognizes you and provides a more personalized experience that shows just the information that matters to you such as your messages, reminders, schedule, music/video recommendations, and so forth.
Look maw, no hands!
The Google Nest Home Hub adds a new Quick Gestures feature, letting you pause and resume media just by looking at it and raising your hand. This is perfect for those situations where the noise in the room is so loud that Google Assistant can’t hear you (this happens to me a TON with my Google Home).
A bigger, better display makes for a better entertainment experience
In our Google Home Hub review we noted that the 7-inch display felt a little cheap. This wasn’t just because of it as small, it also had a less than great resolution of 1024 x 600. Thankfully the 10-inch 1280 x 800 display is a welcome improvement. Although the bigger display doesn’t directly add any new features, it should allow for a better experience when watching YouTube and other videos.
A sound experience that’s a bit closer to the Google Home Max
While the Google Home Hub (okay, Nest Hub, it’ll take us a while to adjust!) didn’t have horrible sound, it was far from a standout feature either. The new Google Nest Hub Max upgrades the speaker experience packing in dual 38mm speakers and a 78mm subwoofer. The music experience seems to be at a level between the Home and Home Max smart speakers, meaning it works well for music and other audio-based experiences.
All this plus everything the Google Nest Hub is capable of
In addition to the new features and improvements above, the Google Nest Hub Max is also capable of all the same features as the older Google Home Hub including easy ways to control your smart home, recipe assistance, and much more. When it comes down to the Google Nest Hub Max vs Google Home Hub, it all depends on what you’re looking for. If you want a cheap kitchen helper the Google Home Hub still makes a lot of sense. After all, the Google Home Hub is currently just $99 — a fair bit cheaper than the $299 asking price of the Hub Max.
If you want a device that has better entertainment features, camera-based security features, and a bunch of new bells and whistles? Then the Hub Max might be worth the premium, but you’ll have to wait until it goes on sale July 15th.