Google took to the stage to announce its newest wares in a hardware event yesterday. Along with the newest #pixel3 devices they spent a lot of time talking about Google Home, and specifically a new product called Google Home Hub.
I found it interesting that they chose to call this new product a “hub”, why? A hub is commonly know to be a device that all other devices talk to, typically something like Smartthings HUB, or Vera HUB, or Wink HUB would all be more typical devices that would fit the category HUB, so why not this new product? Well, Google Home Hub does not really add and typical “HUB” functionality in the typical sense, it is simple a Google Home with a screen, think of it as a cross between Google Mini, and your phone!
So why HUB.
Google pointed out an interesting fact during the presentation and that is many people have Smart Home Devices in their house, and don’t even know it. Think about that, at first it sounds crazy, but the more I thought about it I realized it must be true. Think of all the people that get gifts, or buy products like Nest thermostats, LIFX bulbs, smart remotes and TV’s and don’t even realize or understand the true capability. Imagine how many people have installed a Nest thermostat and don’t ever use it any other way than turning the dial!
So, with this in mind, I believe that the idea of a hub has become a marketing job now, it no longer needs to be a specific device that allows your devices to talk, but from a consumer point of view it’s simply a place in which you can access, or manage all of you devices together.
I am sure this is just the first of Google’s new products that will offer a way for users to control their home automation devices, in fact its not really even the first, your phone, Google Home, Google Mini were all “HUBS” before the Google Home Hub ever existed!