Google has rolled out an update to all Google Home Mini devices (currently in the hands on reviewers) that removes the top touch functionality of the device. When you tap on the top of the Home Mini it can play and pause music, while a long touch will active Google Assistant.
The feature has been removed after a bug was found that made the Mini think the touch section was being held down, so Google Assistant was constantly activated. This meant the compact device was always listening to its surroundings and sending the recordings to Google, which can obviously come across as an invasion of privacy.
Google quickly released an update that fixed the bug but now a new update has been issued to completely remove all top touch functionality.
Google Assistant can still be activated by saying "OK, Google" or "Hey, Google" and touching the sides of the Home Mini to adjust the volume still works.
Google has issued the following statement: "We take user privacy and product quality concerns very seriously. Although we only received a few reports of this issue, we want people to have complete peace of mind while using Google Home Mini."
"We have made the decision to permanently remove all top touch functionality on the Google Home Mini. As before, the best way to control and activate 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. You can still adjust the volume by using the touch control on the side of the device."
Google hasn't said if and when it will reinstate the functionality, but we assume it will be looking to fix it quickly and issue a further update. The Google Home Mini is currently available to pre-order in the UK and US and a promotion will see you get one for free when you pre-order a Pixel 2 smartphone. Hopefully Google can fix the issue before the 19 October release date.