Google Home Mini caught constantly spying in owner's bathroom

Google's Home Mini needed a software patch to stop some of them from recording everything

Google's Home Mini needed a software patch to stop some of them from recording everything

He came to this conclusion after experiencing certain mishaps with the Google Home Mini, in which the smart speaker would fail to pick up on commands. After all, this is a company which has had to deal with a variety of privacy-infringing scandals in the past, and a company that makes money off your data.

Like the company's other voice-activated assistants, the Google Home Mini also responds to keywords like "OK, Google" or "Hey, Google". It's a good thing this issue was uncovered before the home hubs went on general sale, but does perhaps raise wider concerns around the potential for recording devices in our homes to malfunction, and capture information we may not be happy with sharing. While this doesn't seem to be the case with all the units shipped so far, some of them were having this flaw.

"We learned of an issue impacting a small number of Google Home Mini devices that could cause the touch mechanism to behave incorrectly".

'All of this was done quietly, with only the four lights on the unit I wasn't looking at flashing on and then off'. Heres the kicker: the Google Home Mini has three touch-sensitive areas on it.

There, clear as day, were thousands of items, each with a play button and a timestamp - recordings. Otherwise, the speaker will continue to spy on you.

Smart speakers are only meant to listen when you want them to, which is why they have wake-up words and phrases. These faulty sensors can be found on the first units of the Google Home Mini, and these were the units that were handed over to the reviewers at Google's Pixel event October 4, 2017.

On paper, the donut-sized Google Home Mini and premium Apple HomePod-rivaling Google Home Max look pretty sweet, with early reviews consolidating at least the former's position as a very strong Echo Dot contender.

This would appear to remove a feature from the Home Mini as well as stop units affected by the problem from being accidental home snoopers. Not only because the speaker recorded everything it could hear, but also because this incident indicates that Google's hardware isn't flawless, no matter what the company told us during last week's press event. The Home Mini will now only wake when it hears the wake word.

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