Rumor mill: Rumor has it that Google is currently working on a new model of its Nest Hub with a detachable screen. Such a form factor could launch the company’s smart home system into the tablet sector.
It appears that a new Nest Hub is coming this year. According to anonymous sources speaking with 9to5Google, the device will have a detachable screen allowing it to operate as a tablet. It docks with a base speaker to function like Google’s existing Nest Hub models when not in use as a personal device.
The two Nest Hubs Google currently offers, starting at $99, work like smart home speaker systems with a touchscreen interface. The touchscreen comes with a basic suite of entertainment apps like YouTube and Spotify but isn’t designed to work as a full-blown tablet. Users can control home sound systems, cameras, doorbells, audio systems, and even thermostats.
The move raises questions about what a detached Google Nest tablet could offer. Would it contain the same apps as the current Nest Hub in a more mobile form factor, or could it perhaps double as an Android tablet? How much of the processing power would be in the tablet as opposed to the base speaker?
It will be interesting to see how this new Nest product plays out down the road. Currently, Google doesn’t have a branded tablet. It has allowed Samsung and Amazon to dominate the Android tablet market while seemingly content with its small share of the smartphone pie afforded by its Pixel line.