(Pocket-lint) - Google Assistant is an excellent voice assistant. It not only brings the power of Google search to the table, but it's conversational too. Like Amazon's Alexa, Google's Assistant can set alarms, read news briefings, tell you what the weather is like, control compatible smart home devices and play music, among plenty of other features.
Google offers its own Google Assistant-enabled speakers in the form of the Google Home and Nest devices, but there are plenty of Google Home alternatives too.
The best Google Assistant speakers
Google Assistant is an excellent voice assistant. It not only brings the power of Google search but it is conversational too. Like Amazon's Alexa, Google's Assistant can set alarms, read news briefings, tell you what the weather is like, control compatible smart home devices and play music, among plenty of other features.
Google offers its own Google Assistant-enabled speakers in the form of the Google Home devices, but there are plenty of Google Home alternatives too.
From Harmon Kardon and Sony to Panasonic and Sonos, here are the best Google Assistant speakers available.
Sonos One is the smallest speaker available in the Sonos portfolio and it offers Google Assistant support in the US, UK and some other countries, allowing it to do pretty much everything the Google Home can. The Sonos One delivers superb sound quality, coupled with a great design and seamless multi-room audio with other Sonos speakers.
For those after an excellent smart speaker, the Sonos One is certainly one to consider. Unlike other smart speakers, Sonos offers support for both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, rather than just one or the other. You can't have both running at the same time, but if you want to try out Google Assistant, whilst still having the option to go back to Alexa, the Sonos One is a perfect way to do that.
Google Nest Mini
Google is really starting to up its game when it comes to first-party hardware. For a long time, Amazon's Echo speakers put Alexa out in front as an assistant with good hardware support. The newest Nest Mini goes a long way to fight that assumption — it's Google's answer to the Echo Dot.
The good news is that it's just as impressive as that puck speaker. In a tiny, classy package you get really impressive sound (given the size), and easy access to the Google Assistant with all its wisdom. It's also one of, if not the cheapest entry point to getting Google Assistant in place around your home.
The Sonos One is a brilliant speaker, but it lacks one thing that Sonos has finally brought to the table with the Sonos Move — portability. This is the first ever hybrid speaker from Sonos, bringing the best of both worlds to the table. When it's docked on its cradle in your home, the Move is an exemplary smart speaker very much in the mold of the Sonos One.
That means it's got Google Assistant on board for your smart home control needs, and stunning sound. If you want, though, you can pick the speaker up and take it out and about for hours of playback through Bluetooth. You won't be able to use the Assistant unless it's on your home WiFi, of course, but that won't slow you down much.
Google's very own smart speaker is obviously in many ways the purest version of a Google Assistant speaker you could find, but it's also not the newest hardware by a long stretch, hence its slightly lower position on this list than you might expect.
The speaker is still a great option, though - it looks great and we're fond of its two-tone look, too. Plus, the Assistant is as responsive as you could possibly hope.
The Panasonic GA10 features a retro design, which might not be to everyone's taste, but some will prefer it to Google Home's air freshner-style look. The GA10 doesn't offer calling functionality like Google Home but it delivers great sound quality, versatile audio input selection and it is just as smart as Google Home, meaning plenty of smart home integrations.
The GA10 is an excellent Google Home alternative for those after decent audio. It is as much a living room speaker as it is a smart assistant and while it it costs more than Google Home, it's a lot cheaper than a Google Home Max and it delivers in the sound department.
Google Nest Hub Max
This may or may not suit the definition of a smart speaker, depending on your perspective — there is an obvious screen element to it. Nonetheless, the Nest Hub Max is a pretty all-encompassing device, and obviously includes Google Assistant as standard.
The smart display gives you a deeper degree of interaction with the Assistant, since it can surface visual information or photos to answer your requests. Beyond that, you get surprisingly impressive sound and a really useful smart home hub, all in one package. Plus, the Nest Hub Max's camera (which the smaller Nest Hub doesn't include) lets you make video calls with ease.
Sony's LF-S50G is a lovely speaker, featuring a solid, premium build that will blend in with any home decor. It looks similar to Apple's HomePod, offering 360-degree sound and it comes in three colour options. LED lights indicate the time and when Google Assistant is activated, four further lights appear above the digital clock beneath the material cover.
Aside from voice control, the Sony LF-S50G speaker has gesture control so you can wave over the top of the device to skip a track or adjust the volume. Inside, the LF-S50G has a full range speaker driver for mid-range vocals and high trebles, while a separate subwoofer handles the low-end bass.
American audio company Polk Audio offers the Google Assistant-enabled Polk Assist speaker. The speaker features a great design and build quality with black and white colour options and quick access buttons for launching Google Assistant if the music is too loud for the 'Hey Google' or 'Ok Google' wake words to be heard.
The Polk Assist comes with all the capabilities of Google's own Home speakers and while it doesn't offer 360-degree sound like some others on this list, it does come with a 1-inch tweeter and 3.5-inch mid-woofer inside. It's a little more expensive than Google Home though.
LG ThinQ WK7
The LG WK7 speaker features a cylindrical form with front firing speakers and it brings a serious look. There are a number of touch controls on the top including volume, a function button to switch input modes and play/pause, while a mute button is present on the rear to turn off Google Assistant and LEDs are on the front indicate when Google Assistant is listening.
The WK7 speaker features Meridian Audio tuning, which extends to bass and vocal management, and LG also includes Hi-Res music support in this Google Assistant-enabled speaker, coupled with upsampling and upscaling for lower quality sources.
Harman Kardon Citation Series
Harman Kardon doesn't just offer one Google Assistant-enabled speaker, the Samsung-owned company has an entire range. The Citation Series is comprised of the One, 100, 300 and 500 speakers, with the One being the smallest and the 500 being the largest. There is a sound bar, sub, surround speakers and tower speakers in the series too though.
All the speakers in the Harman Kardon Citation Series have Google Assistant on board, except the sub and surround speakers. Only the One, 100 and 300 are available to buy at the moment but the other Citation speakers are coming soon. We've heard them briefly and we were impressed by their sound capability so they are worth looking into.
Like the Sonos One and Move further up this list, the Sonos Beam is both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant enabled. The Beam is significantly more expensive than the Google Home but it offers some serious sound for its compact size.
Aside from once again offering a choice of voice assistants, the Beam isn't just a speaker. It has seamless multi-room audio like the Sonos One but the Beam also offers TV sound so you get a smart speaker and sound bar in one.
Cambridge Audio Yoyo L
The Cambridge Audio Yoyo comes in three size options, with S, M and L after the name standing for small, medium and large. The woollen-clad box is a savvy sound-bar alternative, whilst also delivering good bass and powerful sound.
Slightly different from others on this list, the Cambridge Audio Yoyo features Chromecast built-in so it can be recognised and controlled through the Google Home app, but for voice control, you'll need to add a Google Home mini or another Google Assistant speaker.