Google's latest Nest Wifi routers are rather expensive, but unique: They serve as both a Wi-Fi access point and a Nest Home speaker at the same time. However, many people already have tons of Google or Nest Home Minis lying around as Google likes giving them out as gifts or bundling them in with other purchases, so the Wifi access points don't necessarily have to be equipped with the Assistant for everyone. Google seems to be thinking the same thing, as 9to5Google has uncovered that the company might be working on an updated version of its original Assistant-less Wifi mesh router, the Google Wifi, potentially going for as little as $99.
The publication found information on a new device codenamed "Breeze" with a "GJ2CQ" model number that fits the scheme of the rest of Google's smart home lineup. This model number can already be found in the Google Wifi app as part of some code responsible for checking whether a device "is Gale" — also known as the original Google Wifi, pictured above. The code essentially verifies whether a router is the new Breeze device or the 2016 Google Wifi. There's also a new animation hidden in the app that shows how you connect the new Breeze router to your modem. The "Breeze" name could also be found in since removed listings on Walmart and Home Depot, currently offering it for $99 (though the price might be a placeholder).
We can corroborate 9to5Google's report with a source of our own who gave us access to screenshots of an internal Google website, highlighting what's changing between the original Google Wifi and the second-gen Google Wifi: The reset button moves to the bottom as opposed to the side, the Google "G" on the top will be engraved, and there's now a barrel jack power adapter. Both the barrel jack and the reset button can also be seen in the animation obtained by 9to5Google. Our source says that the new product should simply be called "Google Wifi 2020," though it seems odd that Google would omit its Nest branding here as it's moving all of its smart home devices under that umbrella.
Barring any changes to the 2020 name, the company likely wants to release the new router this year. Maybe we'll already hear more about it during the September 30 Pixel event?