Did you know that the Nest Guard has a built-in microphone? Well, you probably do now as the device can act as a Google Assistant-enabled smart speaker, but those that initially bought the device had no idea. In fact, Google has now admitted that it omitted any mention of a built-in microphone completely by mistake.
When Google announced that its bringing the Google Assistant to the Nest Guard, the hub for the Nest Secure smart security system, everyone wondered how this would work; after all, there was no built-in microphone on the Nest Guard, or at least there wasn’t one advertised. Thankfully, Google cleared up the mess by confirming that the Nest Guard would be able to act similarly to a Google Home Mini thanks to its hidden in-built microphone. That revelation panicked a few people who bought the device without even knowing it included a microphone.
Google has now apologised to everyone who felt deceived by the omission, noting in a statement to Business Insider that “the on-device microphone was never intended to be a secret and should have been listed in the tech specs.” Google went further in defending its decision to include a microphone, noting “security systems often use microphones to provide features that rely on sound sensing. We included the mic on the device so that we can potentially offer additional features to our users in the future, such as the ability to detect broken glass.”
There’s no big deal surrounding Google’s inclusion of a microphone, after all it has already enabled the Nest Guard to be turned into a smart speaker. In fact, Google has already confirmed that the only way to get the speaker to actually listen is to enable it yourself – meaning there’s no need to worry about Google listening to your every move if you haven’t enabled it. Of course, that doesn’t stop the potential for a security exploit, but Google likely thought about that before including the microphone.