Google’s biggest, loudest, and hopefully best-sounding smart speaker is now available for purchase. Best Buy is selling the Google Home Max for $399. Verizon has it too (but the link to the product page doesn’t work at the moment so you have to search for it), and the Google Store… lets you sign up to join the wait list.
While the list price for a Google Home Max is about 3 times as much as the list price for a standard Google Home, it’s also a much more impressive speaker.
Google equips the speaker with dual 4.5 inch woofers and two 0.7 inch custom tweeters. The system has a quad-core processor, USB Type-C and 3.5mm audio jacks, microphones with support for far-field voice recognition, and WiFi and Bluetooth. It also supports wireless stereo pairing, allowing you to use multiple speaker for left and right channels, or set up a multi-room audio system by placing multiple speakers throughout your house.
It’s also designed to adjust the sound depending on the location in a room where it’s placed, so it projects audio differently if it’s in a corner than if it’s in the center of a room.
Basically, it’s a speaker for folks who want an always-available, voice-controlled digital helper like Google Assistant, but who don’t want to put up with listening to music through a dinky speaker like a Google Home or Google Home Mini.
Apple is taking a similar approach with its upcoming HomePod speaker with Siri support. The difference is Apple’s $349 HomePod will be the company’s only smart speaker at launch. There is no cheaper option. Amazon, meanwhile, offers a range of Alexa-enabled speakers including the Echo Dot, Echo, Echo Plus, and Amazon Tap. But what the company lacks is a high-end model to compete with the Google Home Max or Apple HomePod.
The Google Home Mini measures 13.2″ x 7.4″ x 6″ and comes in chalk white or charcoal grey color options.