According to sources speaking to the site, this new Next Hub will indeed have Soli radar controls, improved audio and Google Fit integration with sleep tracking. It’s also set to have a design that mimics that of the original Nest Hub.
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If you’re a fan of the original Nest Hub design, you’ll be happy to hear that the same “floating screen” design is returning for round three. We don’t know much about this, but presumably it’ll be closer in size to the Nest’s 7-inch display, rather than the much larger 10-inch display of the Nest Hub Max.
Similar colors are set to be returning as well, with gray, black, and sand pink. Aqua is not coming back, but apparently something similar to the Nest Audio’s “Sky” coloring will be in its place.
Google is always one to improve the audio experience on its smart products, and the new Next Hub is no exception. It’s set to offer general improvements to the audio, as expected, plus an additional far-field microphone. That means the new Nest Hub will have three microphones, just like the Nest Mini and Next Audio.
The big upgrade is the presence of the Soli radar chip. This first debuted on Google’s Pixel 4 smartphone, designed for touch-free gesture control. While it worked, Soli was still pretty gimmicky and didn’t add much to the phone. However, Google’s finding better uses for it this time round.
We first heard about Soli support back in January, but 9to5Google now claims that it will primarily be used for sleep tracking. It’s going to be interesting to see how this works, since most sleep-tracking keeps tabs on movement and heart rate to work out whether you’re asleep.
Soli should be able to track movement easily, provided it’s pointed at your bed, but will that be enough? I guess we’re going to find out pretty soon.
It’s not clear whether Soli will let you use air gestures on the new Nest, based on 9to5Google’s report. However, it would be a bit of a waste if that wasn’t an option. After all, it would be helpful to control your Next Hub from across the room, even if you could technically use Google Assistant. Whether you don’t like “Hey Google” commands, or find yourself in a situation where you need complete silence. The chip is there, so why the heck not?
We don’t know exactly when the new Nest Hub is coming, but Google is said to be announcing “sooner than later” and for a similar price to the current model. That would make it around $90, though no doubt it will be on sale as soon as Black Friday rolls around again.
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