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Google removes Home Mini's touch functionality following privacy concerns

12 Octobre 2017

"We rolled out an update on October 7 to mitigate the issue", Google said in a statement. "Although we only received a few reports of this issue, we want people to have complete peace of mind while using the Google Home Mini". The limited group of people given the device - media, Google employees, and other attendees of the hardware event - will no longer see any interactions initiated with the touch function in My Activity, a place Google users can review, hear, or delete Google Assistant interactions.

Google Home Mini gave one early tester a shock (not literally) when he found that the gadget was recording every bit of sound in the house before transmitting it to Google. "As before, the best way to control and activate the Google Home Mini is through voice, by saying "Ok Google" or 'Hey Google, ' which is already how most people engage with our Google Home products".

After Tesla CEO Elon Musk expressed his concern for privacy with Google Clips, the #Google Home Mini smart speaker is also getting a feature disabled because of similar concerns.

With the top button gone, the Home Mini now has to be activated entirely by voice, which isn't really a huge limitation since it's created to be a voice assistant. "We've chose to permanently remove all top touch functionality on Google Home Mini".

So again, if you ordered a Google Home Mini, you should expect the top touch functionality to no longer work.

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Announced earlier this month alongside the new Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL smartphones, the Google Home Mini is a compact version of the Google Home smart speaker the company launched in select markets a year ago. The company also says that the Mini's left and right side can still be tapped to adjust volume.

The consumers will be able to continue to be able to control the device using the "Ok Google" or "Hey Google" hotwords.

It's still unclear, however, if dropping the touch functionality will affect sales of the speaker. In response, Google acknowledged that this bug affected a small number of units, and issued a software update that would disable that button entirely, for all users, while it explored a long-term fix.

Normally, there are two ways to interact with Google's smart speakers, including the Mini. The touch-sensitive sides for changing the volume of the Home Mini will remain active.

Google removes Home Mini's touch functionality following privacy concerns