Google unveiled the Nest Audio back in September, a long overdue upgrade on the original Google Home speaker built to take on the Amazon Echo. Now the tech giant has confirmed a useful new feature for the speaker that will be arriving in a future software update.
Speaking to the Wall Street Journal (opens in new tab), a Google spokesperson has confirmed that Nest Audio devices will soon work with Chromecasts as extended sound systems, so you'll be able to play the Chromecast audio through these speakers rather than through your TV.
It's not much of a surprise – in fact it's more of a surprise that the speaker didn't launch with the functionality built in, considering Google is usually so keen to promote integrations between its products (you can bring up the video feed from a Nest camera on the Chromecast, for example).
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This is also something we've seen from Amazon (with the Amazon Echo speakers and the Fire TV devices) and Apple (with the HomePod and the Apple TV). Google won't want its speaker to be behind the competition in terms of features.
Unfortunately, the spokesperson didn't mention any other key details, such as how the setup might work, how many speakers would be supported at once, and when we might see this start rolling out to Nest Audio devices.
We're also still uncertain whether this is going to work with older Google speakers too, such as the Google Home Max or the Nest Mini. All we know at the moment is that the feature is on the way – and we'll of course let you know when it arrives.
The Nest Audio offers a decent level of audio quality, but whether it's better than the sound systems built into modern TVs is another matter. Still, these speakers should offer an upgrade in terms of stereo and surround sound positioning at least.
Google has of course been busy upgrading its Chromecast line too: the new Chromecast with Google TV is the first Chromecast to come with a remote control and its own on-board storage, and it also features a revamped software interface.
Via Android Police (opens in new tab)