The Google Home got an update today with no immediately discernible changes to the UI. But as usual, there are some other interesting changes that speak to what we'll see happening in the future. Google is preparing the interface for users to migrate their Nest accounts to Google for improved security, there will be support for Internet radio, and it looks like a lightweight bottom navigation bar is in development.

Teardown

Disclaimer: Teardowns are based on evidence found inside of apks (Android's application package) and are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete information. It's possible that the guesses made here are wrong or inaccurate. Even when predictions are correct, there is always a chance that products could change or may be canceled. Much like rumors, nothing is certain until it's officially announced and released.

The features discussed below are probably not live yet, or may only be live for a small percentage of users. Unless stated otherwise, don't expect to see these features if you install the apk. All screenshots and images are real unless otherwise stated, and images are only altered to remove personal information.

Migrating accounts from Nest to Google

After a series of issues with hacked Nest accounts, Google announced users would be able to migrate their Nest accounts to Google accounts for the sake of better security. Now we're seeing this process coming to life in the Google Home app. A bunch of new text was added that gives the basic layout of the transition. As you can see above, there are also some cute animations of the Nest iconography transforming into the Google Home and Google account logos.

For some people, the move will be fairly straightforward, relying only on linking your Google account and tapping a few times to confirm the process. Things get more complicated if you have any products utilizing Works with Nest integration. As Google previously explained, the Works with Nest API will be deprecated and developers are being directed to the Works with Google Assistant API, so existing connections will have to be disabled to complete the migration.

strings
<string name="olive_nest_query_title">Do you have a Nest Account?</string>
<string name="olive_nest_query_body">Nest and Google are now together. If you have a Nest Account, migrate it to Google in order to use it with this device or feature.</string><string name="olive_remove_wwn_title">Disconnect Works with Nest</string>
<string name="olive_remove_wwn_body">Google does not support Works with Nest Connections. To use this %1$s with the Google Home app, you\'ll have to disconnect your current Works with Nest connection from %2$s.</string><string name="o426_merged_exit_alert_title">Account setup</string>
<string name="o426_merged_exit_alert_body">Your account has been migrated but you still have some settings to acknowledge. Are you sure you want to leave?</string>
<string name="o426_unmerged_exit_alert_title">Migration incomplete</string>
<string name="o426_unmerged_exit_alert_body">Are you sure you want to leave? You\'ll have to start account migration over next time.</string><string name="proceed_anyways_warning_title">Are you certain?</string>
<string name="proceed_anyways_warning_body">By continuing, you will not be able to migrate any Nest Account to %1$s.\10\10Any devices from existing non-migrated Nest Accounts will need to be reset if you want to use them with your %2$s.</string><string name="olive_migration_confirmation_title">Have you finished migrating your Nest Account?</string>
<string name="olive_migration_failed_title">Couldn\'t complete migration</string>
<string name="olive_migration_failed_body">Try migrating to %1$s again or contact customer support.</string>
<string name="olive_migration_failed_proceed_anyways">Continue without migrating</string>
<string name="olive_nest_supp_tos_title">Supplemental Nest terms</string>
<string name="olive_nest_supp_tos_body">By continuing, you agree to the supplemental %1$s</string>
<string name="olive_nest_supp_tos_link_text">Nest Terms of Service</string>

Things also get more complicated for users when a Nest device is registered to somebody else's account. Evidently the devices, or accounts, will have to "unify" so you can continue using them. You'll be able to send instructions to them as part of the process.

strings
<string name="structure_426_contact_owner_title">Contact the owner</string>
<string name="structure_426_contact_owner_body">It looks like another home member has these Nest devices on their account. They can\'t be connected to your %1$s unless you contact their owner to unify your home.\10\10Please send them these instructions.</string><string name="structure_426_nest_devices_query_title">Do you want to connect other Nest devices?</string>
<string name="structure_426_nest_devices_query_body">If anyone else has Nest devices in this home, you can combine them all into a unified home and make it easier to use them with your %1$s.</string><string name="structure_426_existing_devices_confirmation_title">Create a new network?</string>
<string name="structure_426_existing_devices_confirmation_body">You\'re about to create a new home network. Your %1$s won\'t be able to connect to any existing Nest devices in this home.</string>
<string name="structure_426_create_new_network">Create network</string>

Internet radio support

If you're reading this, you've probably set up a default music streaming service for Google Assistant in the past. Whenever you ask for a song, it's this service that will be used automatically unless you specify a different one. This is also important if you need to manually associate an account with that service. While on-demand streaming was supported, live broadcasts are going to behave a little differently, and now it looks like Google is taking care of that.

A couple new lines indicate that Google Home will be adding a section for linking radio services to your account. Just like any other streaming service, this should make it possible to hear your favorite stations with a simple voice command.

<string name="gae_wizard_template_radio_title">Add radio services</string>
<string name="gae_wizard_template_radio_description">Allow the Assistant to play radio from your linked services</string>

"Simplified" bottom bar navigation

There may be a new bottom bar in the works. A file for a new "simplified" version of the bottom bar has been added with the name simplified_bottom_bar_navigation_menu, which only differs from the original by the addition of the word "simplified" at the beginning. The contents of the file are also notably different, featuring the five buttons we can see below: Home, Discover, the microphone, Browse, and Account.

The new button nav bar appears to feature only three buttons: Home, microphone, and Browse. Evidently the Discover and Account tabs will be yanked and either placed elsewhere in the interface, or their content may simply merge into other places.

simplified_bottom_bar_navigation_menu
<menu
xmlns:android="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res/android" xmlns:app="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res-auto">

<item android:enabled="true" android:id="@id/home_tab" android:orderInCategory="0" android:title="@string/home_tab_name" app:actionLayout="@layout/tab_view" app:showAsAction="always" />
<item android:enabled="true" android:id="@id/dummy_tab" android:orderInCategory="1" android:title="@null" app:actionLayout="@layout/tab_view_dummy" app:showAsAction="always" />
<item android:enabled="true" android:id="@id/browse_tab" android:orderInCategory="2" android:title="@string/browse_tab_name" app:actionLayout="@layout/tab_view" app:showAsAction="always" />
</menu>

A future version will probably adopt the updated account switcher interface, just like the recent Google Voice update. As for the Discover tab, my guess is that its contents will be spread out between Home and Browse, or perhaps it will be going away entirely.

So far, there's no sign that this has gone live yet, and it appears other portions of the interface aren't finished yet, so we'll probably have to wait another version or two for this one to pop up.

Download

The APK is signed by Google and upgrades your existing app. The cryptographic signature guarantees that the file is safe to install and was not tampered with in any way. Rather than wait for Google to push this download to your devices, which can take days, download and install it just like any other APK.

Google Home
Google Home
Developer: Google LLC
Price: Free