The Google Home Mini.
Yep, that’s a Chromebook.
Check out that back design for the Pixelbook! It actually matches the Pixel phone with a white glass section and a silver body.
The new (new?) Daydream View headsets.
Android fansite Droid Life is on fire today with a big series of leaks of Google’s upcoming hardware launches. After showing off pictures and pricing for the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, the site has details on the new “Google Home Mini,” a second smartphone-powered Daydream VR headset, and a new flagship Chromebook Pixel.
First up is the new “Google Home Mini,” a smaller version of the Google Home, which will retail for just $50. The colors here are “Chalk” (white/grey), “Charcoal” (black), and “Coral” (red). Like the Amazon Echo Dot, the Google Home Mini skips the thumping speaker setup for a smaller, cheaper form factor meant more for commands and Q&A sessions rather than for music.
Droid Life mentions that these aren’t portable and still require a power plug, but, other than that, not many details are available. We see the typical set of lights on the top, but there’s no obvious way to adjust the volume (a touch gesture?) or mute the microphone, both of which seem to be standard features on both the Google Home and on the new third-party Google Assistant speakers.
In other news: the Chromebook Pixel is back! After being off the market for about a year, Google is once again producing a flagship Chromebook. Droid Life says the new laptop is called the “Google Pixelbook” and will retail for $1199. That price is for the 128GB version. The Pixelbook has two more storage tiers: the 256GB version for $1399, and a 512GB version for $1729. There’s also a pen. The “Pixelbook Pen” is a $99 stylus that is pressure sensitive and has tilt support.
Wait a minute—why does a Chromebook have storage tiers? Chrome OS is a cloud-centric operating system and still doesn’t really use storage for anything. Unless you are really into Android apps, which can now be run on the OS, there doesn’t seem to be much point to the higher storage tiers.
Droid Life also has details on the “new” Daydream View VR headsets. These are smartphone-powered VR viewers with a 3-axis controller. There are new colors and a $20 jump in price (now $99), but I’m not sure what else here could possibly be “new.” The original Daydream View didn’t have any “smarts” at all in the headset—it was just a cloth-and-plastic phone holder, so we can’t imagine what Google could change there. Is the controller different? The picture looks just like the existing model.
We should have all our questions answered at Google’s October 4 event, where Ars will have boots on the ground to bring you the latest news.
Listing image by Droid Life