Google Home is a wonderful little speaker with Google Assistant, but it's tied to an outlet, so you can't carry it around your home as you get your work done without having to unplug, replug, reboot, and re-connect whatever you were listening to. And yeah, you can get Google Assistant everywhere with your phone, but Google Assistant is more robust on Google Home than it is anywhere else, especially when it comes to music and playback controls.
And if this new battery-powered base by Ninety7 works even half as well as it claims, I want one, and I want it now.
LOFT for Google Home is essentially a third-party metal Google Home base, being held in place by magnets like the regular Home bases and charging with the same Google Home power adapter. LOFT is supposed to sport a six-hour battery life while off that original Google Home power adapter, which isn't mind-blowing, but for a base this small, I'm not sure how much more you could squeeze in there.
As you can see, the LOFT isn't a massive base, and its design blends quite well with Google Home, with a white base and a metal speaker grill that matches the original three metal Home bases offered by Google. The LOFT for Google Home is supposed to retail for $50, but it's up for pre-order at $40 with free shipping. If you're as interested as I am, hit the pre-order link below. Ninety7 has shipped a battery-powered speaker for the Echo Dot before, and is also offering pre-orders for a portable battery for the second-generation Echo Dot.
Ara Wagoner was a staff writer at Android Central. She themes phones and pokes YouTube Music with a stick. When she's not writing about cases, Chromebooks, or customization, she's wandering around Walt Disney World. If you see her without headphones, RUN. You can follow her on Twitter at @arawagco.
I love the possibilities here in theory, but it seems like there's one HUGE catch when it comes to these battery bases for the Echo and Home. While you can connect to each via BT to use it as a speaker, the "smarts" (and hence, the advantages therein over a traditional BT speaker) of these devices require always-on internet connectivity. While you theoretically could use a tethered hotspot connection on the road, it would require that you perform setup each time you fire up the device on a different connection. At minimum, that's one setup every time you leave with it and one setup when you return home. I feel like this is already kludgy enough sometimes with a Chromecast, let alone one of these. I definitely miss my Homes and Echos while on the road, but my phone fills in well enough. While my inner nerd screams "BUY!" every time I see one of these, the pragmatist sitting on the other shoulder (that has gotten louder with age) says "Why?"
It's not really meant to be portable to take on the go. It's more so to be able to put it anywhere in your house/ apartment without having to be limited to where there's an outlet.
I guess that's a possible use case, but that seems awfully niche. It's half the cost again of another Home (and will likely be more than the cost of the new Home mini). At this point, they're cheap enough to me that one can almost afford to distribute them as needed. I guess it's never a bad thing to have options. :)
A simple solution is to set up your hotspot to use the same ID/password as your WiFi router.
This would be perfect for my wife! She is always taking the Home from room to room and hates the power cord. Might have to invest.
I love the idea of the battery, but I hate the look of the metal speaker grilles. I think there's value here if you move your Google Home around a lot, or perhaps want to take it out to the backyard. However, you could also just get a BT speaker and stream music through your phone. That also applies to taking your Google Home on a camping trip or to the beach (or elsewhere) and using it with a hotspot. When you're not controlling Chromecasts, Google Assistant on Home is pretty much the same as Google Assistant on your phone.
I tried to pre order, but as usual not to the UK
Now that's what ive been waiting for
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