Overview & Price
So you are looking for the Google Home Mini? Perfect you are in the right place! In this Google Home Mini review we give you everything you need to know about the device, from design, spec and everything in between.
The Google Home Mini release date was back on October 17th of 2017 during hardware focused event from Google.
Currently priced at £50 here in the UK, the Google Home Mini is cheap and great way of spreading out smart home control, and compliments the Google Home extremely well.
The Google Home Mini colours are great, ensuring that it fits into any environment easily without being an eye-saw.
Lets take a closer look at what the Google Home Mini has to offer..
When it comes to the Google Home Mini design, it looks kind of similar to the Google Home, only a lot smaller and it has the fabric on the top this time instead of the bottom.
The Google Home Mini weight is 173g, which is about the same as almost exactly the same as an iPhone X; this makes it extremely lightweight and portable allowing you to move it from room to room easily.
Being around the same size as a donut, this device will fit neatly in any room.
Because of the Google Home Mini weight it wont smash into smithereens if you drop this thing from a desk, we have dropped ours multiple times from a height and it has been absolutely fine.
The Google Home Mini has a modern look, allowing it to blend into almost any environment without looking out of place.
The Google Home Mini comes in three different colours, either Coral, Chalk or Charcoal.
We actually own the Chalk version of the device alongside out Google Home, the mini essentially enhances the experience by allowing us to place a couple around the house.
Image: Kevin Bhagat
The only thing that would make you think that the Google Home Mini was a tech device is the microUSB cable that needs to be plugged in for it to have power, and the LED lights that are on the top when the device is turned on.
There is also a small slider button that is used to mute the microphone, if you don’t want Google Assist to listen to you anymore.
To turn the volume up on the device you simply tap the left hand side of the device for volume down, and the right side for volume up.
Long pressing the top will trigger the Google Assistant, and the LED lights will come on for you to know that it has registered your action.
Either this or you can use your voice; we found using our voice was easier as we would often not be sitting close to the device.
So one of the only disadvantages to this cheap variant of the Google Home is the smaller speaker on the top.
Of course with it being a smaller device, the speakers inside are also smaller, so don’t expect the same level of bass and loudness as you would on a Google Home.
Nevertheless the speaker on this thing is surprisingly good, but we will get to that shortly.
At the bottom of the base of the Google Home Mini, there is a circular rubber mat which ensures that the device stays still on any surface, we found this useful as it doesn’t go spinning out of control should your desk move slightly.
One huge benefit of the Google Home Mini is that its performance aspect is exactly the same as the bigger, more expensive Google Home.
Although as mentioned previously, because of the speaker being smaller the sound quality isn’t quite as loud and bassy.
The Google Assist feature is exactly the same, meaning you have all of Google’s information at the command of your voice.
Simply pair it up with the Google Home app on your Android or IOS phone and your set to go.
One thing that is rather annoying is that the Google Home Mini has a mute switch, where as the full size Google Home has a button.
This may not sound like an inconvenience, but if you mute the Google Home Mini with your voice, then go to unmute it with the switch, you will need to flick it forward then back.
This gets very confusing after a while and you find yourself flicking the switch multiple times just to unmute the device, we would have preferred it to be a button instead.
All commands are exactly the same, so “Hey-Google” to get the assistant to work, then our favourite is “What is the traffic like on the A1 motorway?” and “What is the weather looking like for the weekend?”.
Image: BENCE BOROS
If you lose your phone then simply say “Hey-Google, find my phone” and the Assist will ring your phone so you know where it is.
Another personal favourite is “Hey-Google, play an album from Eminem”, the Assist will play a random Album from any artist you wish.
Although one thing we did find slightly annoying, is that the Assist would sometimes struggle to understand the Artists name, so you find yourself repeating yourself 2 or 3 times before it plays.
The Google Home Mini speaker doesn’t suffer from distance either, so it wont make a difference whether you are 2-ft away from the device, or at the other side of the room.
The Google Home Mini even lets you make free calls to UK mobile and landlines from the device, this is one of our favourite features of the Google Home Mini as we use it regularly to call our friends.
Just like the Google Home, the mini can link up to your smart compatible tech, for example if you have the compatible door bell, lights and plug sockets you can really experience the best of having an assistant.
These are all third party accessories, so of course cost you more money, but allow you to set routine commands like “Good Morning Google”.
This is the one we use personally, and this command will turn on our kettle and turn the lights on, so on a morning we simply say the command, then walk downstairs and the kettle is already boiled.
Unlike the Amazon Echo Dot, which is this devices direct competitor, the Google Home Mini pulls its results direct from Google Search, rather than Bing.
This means the information is super accurate and reliable, and its fair to say that the Google Smarts tech is slightly better than the one used in the Echo Dot.
The Google Home Mini makes a great addition to a Google Home, enhancing the speaker power and the reach of the Assistant.
However we definitely wouldn’t replace our Google Home with a Mini, purely because of the difference in speaker.
The Mini is has nowhere near the same bass or volume, although the Assistant side of things is exactly the same.
The Sound Quality from the Google Home Mini isn’t going to blow you away, it lacks the bass and volume that the bigger Google Home has.
That being said the Google Home Mini is not designed to be blasting drum and bass music from it, more of an accessory for the bigger Google Home.
The Mini has a 360-degree speaker, but this is just Google’s marketing as it has a single firing speaker that faces upwards.
Compared to the Amazon Echo Dot, the Google Home Mini is slightly louder, although the Echo Dot does have a 3.5mm headphone jack that makes the speaker use a lot better in our opinion.
As a whole the Google Home Mini sound quality is average, but definitely don’t rely on this to be your main speaker source as it simply isn’t that great.
So should you buy the Google Home Mini?
Well if you currently own a Google Home and are looking to expand the vicinity in which your Assistant reaches, then yes!
The Google Home Mini is cheap and compliments the bigger Google Home very well, and considering it is so cheap to buy, we highly recommend it.
Google Assistant works great, and we love how well the microphone picks up our voice even from across the room.
The Google Home Mini weight is super light, making it easy to move around your home without aching any arms.
Amazon Echo Dot does have a 3.5mm headphone jack that we wished the Mini had too, although we would take the Google Smarts tech over this any day.
The Google Home Mini sound quality certainly won’t blow you away, but then again this is not designed to be a speaker setup, and is more an assistant’s assistant to the Google Home.
The Google Home Mini colours are great and ensure that no matter your interior design, this device will fit right in.
Check out where you can grab yourself a cheap Google Home Mini at the top of this post!
We hope you have enjoyed our Google Home Mini review, feel free to leave a comment, share and give us some feedback!