Google announced the Nest Hub Max smart display during its I/O developer conference in early May, featuring the same design as the Google Home Hub (now called Nest Hub) but with a larger 10-inch display, taking on Amazon's Echo Show.

The Hub Max is powered by Google Assistant, while Amazon's Echo Show is powered by Alexa. Here's how they compare to help you work out which smart display might be the right one for you.

Design and display

  • Hub Max: 10-inch screen, dimensions TBC
  • Echo Show: 10.1-inch screen, 246 x 174 x 107mm

The Google Nest Hub Max has a 10-inch display with white bezels that sits on a speaker base featuring a material cover. On the back of the display, there is a microphone on/off button and there is also physical volume controls too.

A power port is present in the centre at the back of the speaker base. At the top of the display is a built-in camera and there is also an ambient sensor too, automatically adjusting the display brightness based on the surroundings.

The Amazon Echo Show has a 10.1-inch display with a speaker base tapering behind, also with a material cover. A power port is in the centre at the back, while the volume up and down and microphone on/off buttons are at the top of the device, above the display.

There is a built-in camera in the centre at the top of the display, along with front microphones. The display on the Amazon Echo Show is black with a black bezel and the overall design looks slightly bulkier compared to the Nest Hub Max.

Features

  • Hub Max: Google Assistant-powered, built-in Nest Cam, YouTube, Digital photo frame
  • Echo Show: Alexa-powered, built-in Zigbee, Amazon ordering, Amazon Prime Video
  • Both: Video calls, music streaming, smart home control, video playing, help with tasks like weather checking and timers

The Google Nest Hub Max is powered by Google Assistant, while Amazon's Echo Show is powered by Alexa.

You can ask both Google Assistant and Alexa to complete a number of tasks, including set timers, ask what the weather is like or what your day involves, ask for a joke, and control compatible smart home devices linked to your Hub Max or Echo Show.

Both devices also play music, videos and allow for video calling, as well as offer games.

The Google Nest Hub Max has a built-in Nest camera that will work like the Nest Cam IQ, offering intruder alerts and person detection if you have a Nest Aware account. Without an account, you'll still be able to check in on the room you have placed the Hub Max into, as well as use it for Google Duo video calls, gesture controls and Face Match for up to six people. Chromecast support is also built into the Nest Hub Max.

The Amazon Echo Show meanwhile, has a built-in Zigbee smart home hub, allowing very simple control of your smart home devices and negating the need for extra gateway or bridging devices. Alexa is also compatible with a huge range of devices, more so than Google, though Google is catching up.

The Show also has a built-in camera, but it isn't as advanced as the Hub Max's camera. Gesture control isn't an option and it can't recognise a face or allow you to remotely see the room the Show is located in. It does work for video calls though, with Skype an option. It also doesn't yet have YouTube support, after a disagreement with Google. 

Sound

  • Hub Max: 2.1 speaker system
  • Echo Show: 2-inch drivers with passive bass radiator

The Google Nest Hub Max has a 2.1 speaker system, offering a more powerful sound than the smaller Nest Hub with a rear-facing woofer.

The Amazon Echo Show meanwhile, has dual 2-inch drivers with a passive bass radiator. Its speakers are also tuned by Dolby.

Price

  • Hub Max: £219, available 15 July
  • Echo Show: £219.99, available now

The Google Nest Hub Max will be available on 15 July for £219.

The Amazon Echo Show is available now and it costs £219.99.

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Conclusion

The Google Nest Hub Max and Amazon Echo Show are pretty much the same price so the decision between them will come down to whether you want Google Assistant and YouTube from your smart display, or Alexa and Amazon Prime Video.

Alexa is more advanced than Google Assistant when it comes to compatible smart home devices, and the Echo Show also has a built-in Zigbee controller for easier control. That said, the Google Nest Hub Max has a built-in Nest Cam, doubling up as a security camera and it also has a sleeker design than the Echo Show.

We'll be reviewing the Google Nest Hub Max in full in the next couple of months so we'll update this feature with our real world experience. We love the Nest Hub though so we have high hopes. You can read our full Amazon Echo Show review here.