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The Best Google Nest Hub Max Feature is “Look and Talk”

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At Google I/O back in May, Google announced a feature for the Nest Hub Max called “Look and Talk.” The idea behind it was to allow users to interact with their Nest Hub without needing to say “OK, Google” and instead just looking at the device within a certain range. After now enabling this on my kitchen unit, I can say without a doubt that this feature is awesome.

The Nest Hub Max has a full-blown Nest Cam built into it, so that’s why Google is using this specific device to kick off the life of this “Look and Talk” idea. Thanks to Google Assistant on a Nest Hub being trained to recognize your face with Face Match, that Nest Cam can notice you are nearby and then start listening in case you have a command.

I turned the feature on earlier in the week when Google announced it was widely rolling out and I’ve used it numerous times. My kitchen unit is probably the best suited for this, as I can simply lean over from one corner of my small kitchen space to the other and fire up the Assistant. The simple tasks like setting a timer, managing multiple timers, asking for a recipe, adjusting the temperature in my house, looking at my front door camera, or calling my wife on Duo, I can now do with the dirtiest of hands and without having to shout that damn keyword.

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This may sound like the simplest solution not worthy of such praise, but man, I’m one of those people who absolutely hates saying “Hey, Google.” Like, if I have to say that keyword to get something done, I will almost always just reach for my phone instead and either swipe from a corner to fire up Assistant or I just do the task manually from an app. I don’t know what it is, but that keyword is the worst. This has removed my need for it, plus it actually does save time in the kitchen when a matter of seconds can take you from perfectly cooked to burnt.

If you own a Nest Hub Max and want to try this, it’s really easy to setup.

  1. First, you’ll need to make sure Face Match is setup. Find that setup by opening the Google Home app on your phone, tap the Settings button, then “Google Assistant” within the Features section, and then choose “Face Match.” The steps to setup in there mostly just ask that you scan your face from side to side a couple of times.
  2. Once you’ve setup Face Match, you’ll be able to toggle Face Match on or off from the same page you just set it up. You should also see a toggle for “Look and Talk” in there. Toggling this on gives you the powers I described above.
  3. Note: If you are having issues and it doesn’t seem to be working, retraining my face fixed it.

Once setup, every time you come within 5-10 feet of your Nest Hub Max, you’ll see 4 black (or white) dots appear in the top of your display when it recognizes you and is waiting for a command. Should you fire off a command, you’ll see the familiar Assistant-colored dots appear and react. It’s magical, I’m telling you.

Of course, for the privacy-focused folks around, this may sound like your Nest Hub Max is constantly spying on you. I don’t know what to tell you there. I’m not here to change your mind on what Google is or isn’t watching – I’m just telling you that this feature works great for me when I’m in the kitchen doing that work.

For more help on setting up Look and Talk, hit up this Google Support page.

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Did You Order a Galaxy Z Flip 4 or Galaxy Z Fold 4?

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Pre-orders are taking place for the new Galaxy Z Flip 4 and Galaxy Z Fold 4, and as we always say, there’s never a better time to order one of these phones than during this period. Seriously, you should do it.

If you have taken advantage of Samsung’s crazy-good trade-in values, store credit and free accessories, the last thing we want to know is which model you ended up going with. In 2022, both are very good options, seen as relatively minor upgrades over last year’s models, but still offering top specs, water resistance, improved hinge designs for more compact designs, and improved software.

I have been using the Z Fold 4 for a week now and have really been enjoying the experience. The battery life has been great, the displays are nice, and the cameras appear to be very good.

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Which option are you going with?

Best Galaxy Z Flip 4 Deal | Best Galaxy Z Fold 4 Deal



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How Good is Android 13 on Pixel Phones?

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The stable Android 13 update has been out since the beginning of the week and that means a couple of days for you to run it and establish first impressions. I’m curious what those are, as the update is somewhat minor in new features, but huge in terms of bug fixes from Android 12.

To recap, Android 13 dropped on Monday for the Pixel 4, Pixel 4a, Pixel 5, Pixel 5a, Pixel 6, and Pixel 6a. The update was available immediately if you felt like playing in adb, plus we’ve seen it rollout over-the-air as well to some phones. Tim, for example, says he can pull it yet I can’t on my Pixel 6 Pro. Rude, Google.

We talked about all of the new features in Android 13 that you’ll want to be on the lookout for and then spent a lengthy amount of time looking through the list of 150 bugs that Google fixed. Google says it was able to improve “performance, stability, and reliability,” fixed bugs related to charging and Gboard and touch screen palm detection and so much more. Google even says it addressed fingerprint reader performance on the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6a.

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After browsing through reddit, I can see that a number of folks have been quick to share that their fingerprint reader is indeed faster (Do people really believe this?) and that overall performance and stuttering has improved, especially on older Pixel phones.

What about you? How has Android 13 been running on your Pixel phone this week? Or are you still waiting for it?



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Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro Get Major Approval Ahead of Launch

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The Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro stopped through the FCC this week, marking a big step towards launch that should happen around October, if previous launches are any indicator. The filings don’t reveal much, other than supported network bands and the presence of UWB again, but they do give us model numbers to pin on each phone going forward.

There are four FCC filings of note to dip into under Google’s FCC ID. Those filings give us model numbers of GVU6C, GQML3, GP4BC, and GE2AE. After looking through several of the documents at the FCC, I’m pretty confident in saying that the first two are the Pixel 7 and the last two are the Pixel 7 Pro. The GVU6C Pixel 7 also has an alternate model number of G03Z5 alongside it, as does the Pixel 7 Pro’s GE2AE, where GFE4J can be added to its list.

To recap, we have Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro model numbers as follows:

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  • PIXEL 7: GVU6C (G03Z5)
  • PIXEL 7: GQML3 – mmW
  • PIXEL 7 PRO: GP4BC – UWB
  • PIXEL 7 PRO: GE2AE (GFE4J) – UWB, mmW

Each phone has all of the proper network bands to work well here in the US, with select models also supporting 5G mmW. The two models supporting mmW are GQML3 (Pixel 7) and GE2AE (Pixel 7 Pro). The others support sub-6 5G, just not the super speedy 5G mmW that you’ll never attach to anyway.

To tell the difference between Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro devices, we really are guessing (assuming) based on the fact that GP4BC and GE2AE have UWB or ultra-wideband support. In the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro, only the Pixel 6 Pro had UWB and it looks like that’ll be the case again this year. UWB is used for short-range communications in things like luggage trackers or to help a digital car key talk to a car.

The rest of the big network stuff can be see below, where you’ll find WiFi 6E, NFC, and WPT (wireless power transfer aka wireless charging).

Pixel 7 network bands

GQML3 mmW

Pixel 7 Pro network bands

GE2AE mmW

There isn’t much else to take from this because Google already announced each phone. We’re really just waiting for them to go official, so that we can start playing with their cameras, test Google Tensor 2, and see if Google took are of all of the Pixel 6 line’s modem issues.

If you were hoping this arrival at the FCC would tell us when the Pixel 7 will launch, I’m not sure that it does. The Pixel 6 line hit the FCC in September 2021 and then arrived in October. The Pixel 6a showed up at the FCC in April 2022, was announced in May, and then didn’t ship until July.

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