We’ve been down this road before. Not that long ago, the aging, original Google Home finally became unavailable in the Google Store as it went down the path of discontinuation. With Google trying to tie all of their home-bound hardware to the Nest branding, it was only a matter of time, really. First, the Google Home Mini became the Nest mini. The Google Home Hub became the Nest Hub, and the Google Home was supplanted by the excellent Nest Audio.
While I made the argument before that the Google Home Max should simply be rebranded to the Nest Audio Max, it seems Google wasn’t too keen on my suggestion and instead is moving ahead with removing the speaker entirely from the lineup. It’s sad, honestly, because Google has nothing close to this sound quality on offer in the Nest range of smart speakers and there’s not rumor or clear path to a successor, either. Google has said they will continue supporting the Google Home Max in a statement to The Verge:
Existing Google Home Max users shouldn’t worry as they won’t see any change in their service. We’ll continue to offer software updates and security fixes to Google Home Max devices. We’re committed to delivering great sound and whole home audio features across all of our Assistant-enabled products.via The Verge
When we originally saw the Google Home begin to get deep discounts and then move to the discontinued state, it wasn’t long after that we got news about the official replacement for it in the Nest Audio. While I don’t think we’ll see an official Google Home Max replacement in the next few months, I still think there’s room for something similar to it in the Nest speaker lineup for sure. With home theater rumors swirling for Google’s home speakers, it would be great if a soundbar-type speaker was created to take the place of the Google Home Max.
At the end of the day, the Nest Audio is a great speaker at a great price, but it is no replacement for the richness and bass the Google Home Max can produce. With huge differences in prices and sizes, that’s not a surprise, but it is a bummer to think that there’s nothing yet in the queue to swoop in and replace the high-end sound that will be missing from the Nest speaker lineup for the time being.