Best Buy's Insignia smart speakers are some of the cheapest Google Assistant smart home gear you can get, if you grab them during one of their frequent discounts. The last time we covered them, the non-portable version was only $25 and the portable one was $50, but they've fallen below that recently. Until now though, they didn't offer any incentive to grab them instead of a Home Mini, beside their alarm clock display. That has changed with the latest update.
A couple of weeks ago, an update rolled out to the speakers enabling outgoing voice calls. Previously, you couldn't place a call on them like you would on a Home or Home Mini — a limitation of many third-party Assistant speakers. Our tipster Scott alerted us to the change, but we didn't think it was meaty enough to cover on its own.
Now, however, XDA has discovered that these speakers can also be paired in the Home app for stereo sound, à la Google Home Max. No other Assistant speaker that we know of has this function enabled, not even Google's own regular Home and Home Mini, making the Insignia a lot more attractive, especially considering their affordable price.
If you own two of these speakers, you need to put them in one room in the Google Home app then follow the same instructions as the Home Max to pair them, assign left and right channels, or separate them.
If you don't have any and your interest is piqued, keep your eyes open for discounts. Just recently, the non portable version dropped again to $20 (it's now $40) and the portable version went to $25 (it's now $45). I'd say they're even worth the current asking price, given their good reviews and recent feature additions, if you can't manage to hold off until another discount comes by.
- Scott Berns