While we need to take this one with a giant grain of salt, it looks like Google may have future plans of giving users the ability to leverage the Nest Audio (and hopefully other Google smart speakers) as a part of a smart home theater setup. Thanks to a bit of a slip up by Google’s marketing department, it seems a rogue search result that wasn’t quite ready for prime time slipped out and a Reddit user managed to grab a screenshot of the mistake.
Additionally, in the comments of that post, it seems some of the same finds have happened over in the UK with the language changing to ‘home cinema’ instead. This would indicate that this was no mere slip up, but something planned that simply leaked out a bit too early. There are also claims in the thread that users have seen tweets by Google about this functionality that were subsequently deleted, so the evidence is mounting that Google has plans to roll out this functionality at some point.
A firmware update away
If you think about it, between the Google Home Max, Nest Audio, and Nest Mini, you could set up a pretty sweet 5.1 home theater. With the Home Max acting as the bass and center channel, the Nest Audios could form the left/right channels with the Nest Minis holding down the right/left rear surround. With a quick speaker grouping via the Google Home app, you could create your setup and then simply tell the Chromecast to output to that speaker group by default. Easy!
I’m sure I’m making this far simpler than it is in reality, but you can see the potential, right? With that speaker combo, you would have about $600 invested a fully-wireless surround sound setup that could move wherever you choose. You could simply plug in, group up, and start watching. With speaker groups syncing the way that they already do, I see little reason this couldn’t be accomplished. While $600 for a full surround setup may be a bit much for some, it isn’t bad when you look at the competition. For those wanting a bit less expense to achieve better-than-TV sound, a couple Nest Audios would work great for a basic stereo setup, too and cost far less.
With the speaker lineup Google currently has along with the potential of uniting them with existing software (the Google Home app), I don’t just think this is a possibility: I think Google would be silly not to be moving down this path. Hopefully it happens sooner than later.
VIA :9to5 Google