Google's new Nest Hub tracks sleep thanks to the inclusion of a Pixel 4-like Soli radar chip
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Looks can sometimes be deceiving as they say and the new Google Nest Hub is no exception. On the surface, there doesn’t seem to be much different about the latest version of the Nest Hub, but its familiar exterior masks a few new capabilities that could prove to be attractive to potential customers. While the physical differences are minor, the most notable change on that front is a new edgeless bezel that gives it a cleaner overall look.
Dig beneath the surface, however, and things start to get a little more interesting. Chief among the new features is a sleep monitoring feature called “Sleep Sensing” that works using a Soli radar chip like the one found in the Pixel 4 series of smartphones. The Nest Hub, naturally, will need to be placed on a bedside table relatively close to the user for the functionality to work. In combination with audio capture, it will provide users with a snapshot of their sleep quality without needing to use a wearable. It’s free to use initially, but will become part of the Google Fitbit premium subscription service next year.
Google has also worked to improve the audio quality of the new Nest Hub. Google has borrowed technologies it developed for its premium Nest Audio speaker to improve bass response on the new Nest Hub by 50 percent. It has also taken a more environmentally-friendly approach by introducing mechanical parts made from 54 percent recycled post-consumer plastic. The new Nest Hub also now comes in four colors including the original charcoal and chalk colors as well as new mint and sandstone options. The price stays the same as the original at US$100.