The Google Home Mini was announced earlier this month at Google's hardware event in San Francisco, and it is now available for purchase from Verizon, after being available for pre-order for a few weeks. The Google Home Mini is a smaller version of the Google Home, and it does come with a smaller price tag of $49.99. It still has the Google Assistant built-in, so you can ask it questions, have it control your smart home and so much more. Verizon is offering it in two colors: chalk and charcoal. It appears that the coral color is only available from the Google Store.
Google is taking aim at Amazon's Echo Dot with the Home Mini. It's priced the same, but it is slightly better in a few ways. The Echo Dot has a rather terrible speaker inside, while the Home Mini's isn't much better, it does sound better. It won't be as great as the Google Home's speaker, but it is passable. Unfortunately, Google did not include Bluetooth with the Home Mini, so you can't connect it to another speaker for better audio. And it's not portable, since it is always listening, getting good battery life from something that small is pretty difficult, so it does need to stay plugged in.
With Google Assistant, you have Google at your fingertips. It already works with a slew of products including Philips Hue bulbs, LIFX, Wemo, Samsung's SmartThings, and many more. There are new products gaining Google Assistant support nearly everyday, which is great to see. Of course, Google Assistant can control your music, so you can tell the Google Assistant to play a song on a specific music service on a specific device - like a Chromecast-enabled speaker. Or, if you have a Chromecast connected to your TV, you can tell it to play a movie on your TV without having to touch your remote, which is really cool as well. The Google Home Mini is actually a really good value for $50, and will provide you with a ton of functionality that is only getting better each and every day thanks to Google's use of machine learning and artificial intelligence with the Google Assistant.