Hey Google, What’s This?

Hey Google, What’s This?

The Google Home Mini is a voice-activated smart speaker which is powered by Google Assistant. It’s great! You can ask it questions, play music and control smart home features (if you have any!). When AO.com offered me one to review, I snapped it up!

Google Home Mini
Google Home Mini

Straight out of the box, Google Home Mini was easy to set-up. You need to install Google Home (and have a Google account) on your phone or tablet, but it will walk you through the setup with ease.

Google Home Screenshot
Google Home screenshot showing suggestions.

I’ve been having fun asking the Google Home Mini various questions such as “Hey Google, what’s the weather forecast for tomorrow?”, “Hey Google, who are The Quarrymen?” (Random, I know!) and “Hey Google, what’s the news?”. It’s pretty good at answering questions, but occasionally it does stumble and say it doesn’t know (I guess it can’t be expected to know everything!).

Asking “Hey Google, who am I?”, elicited the answer “I think it’s the most excellent person in the world”. Well, thank you, Google!

Apart from asking Google Home Mini questions, I’ve also been using it to stream music from Spotify. Google Home Mini is only small, so don’t be expecting amazing sound from it, but it’s still pretty good. My laptop sounds better, for example, but then I don’t want to turn on my laptop just to listen to music. You wouldn’t want to use Google Home Mini for playing party music, however, the sound is fine for playing music in the background or listening to the radio. The sound is crisp and clear, just don’t be expecting heavy bass. (Using Spotify does require you to connect your Spotify account to the Google Home app though).

I’ve found Google Home Mini great for listening to the radio too. Justing saying “Hey Google, play Radio Wales” prompts it to put on BBC Radio Wales for me. Even while the radio is playing, I can ask Google questions and it’ll answer them before continuing to play the radio. I can also ask it to change the volume without touching anything.

Google Home Mini has no problem understanding the voice commands I give it, though I don’t have much of an accent.

If you have any smart home features (such as heating, lights etc) these are controllable with Google Home Mini too, as is your TV if you have Chromecast (I don’t, but I’m tempted!). There are many smart apps you can connect to.

You can also set sleep timers (so music/media stops playing at a certain time… handy if you’re likely to fall asleep), alarms, add items to a shopping list, and so much more.

Google Home Mini
Google Home Mini

BONUS FEATURE: If you can’t find your mobile phone, simply say “Hey Google, find my phone” and it will make your phone ring on full volume. Brilliant!

I believe products like Google Home Mini are the future. Soon you’ll be able to control all your household items via gadgets like this. Whilst there is the capability for this now, many homes just aren’t kitted out with these features at the moment.

So, would I recommend Google Home Mini? I would! Having used it for a week, I’ve found it fun, useful and interesting. I can be in the middle of something else, yet still be able to ask Google for information (such as the weather forecast, news or travel) or ask it to do something (such as play music etc). Priced at £49 (at the time of writing), it’s worth getting.

This year, Black Friday is on 24th November 2017, so why not check out AO.com for some Black Friday Deals. Maybe you’d like to bag a Google Home Mini for yourself!


Please note: AO.com supplied the Google Home Mini in return for an honest review, but this has in no way influenced my opinion.


  1. Kelly says:

    These voice activated gadgets are becoming all the rage. While I’m far from being a Luddite, I’m not sure I’m ready to embrace all this new “smart” technology. I do like that bonus feature for finding your phone!

  2. Barbara says:

    I could see this being very useful. I’m constantly asking my husband things like do I need a coat, should I take a brolly etc. He would become redundant if I had this handy little gadget.

  3. Jo says:

    I’m so far behind where technology is concerned that gadgets such as this seem a step too far for me at the moment. No doubt I’ll catch up in time, I’m never first in the queue when new technology is launched.

  4. rashbre says:

    Interesting and a sign of how all the different companies are trying to get control of ‘The Home’ now. We already have Alexa, although this Google device is a fascinating alternative. It will be fun to see what happens when the Apple gadget also arrives. We could soon have a whole hose full of these devices!

  5. Shauna says:

    I’ve been seeing so many commercials about products like these and it’s definitely a fun gadget to have in the house. Great post to learn more about the product.

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