The Google Home Hub offers a lot of promise when it comes to using Google Assistant in a new way – but I’m still not sold on having one in my kitchen.

When Google announced the Home Hub on-stage in the wee hours of Wednesday morning, the lack of camera on-board was explained away saying they wanted people to put the Hub in every room of your home, citing privacy. But they’ve simply failed to address rooms like the kitchen (and bathroom for that matter), due to a fairly simple reason: there’s no IP rating.

My kitchen isn’t a dirty place. In fact it’s one of the cleanest in the house, it’s the hub of the home where we spend a lot of time, but when you cook, there’s mess.

Google has made a great deal of noise about their Home Hub, and other Smart Displays showing off step-by-step cooking demos, and people asking Google Assistant ‘How many ounces in a cup?’ which looks fantastic for someone like me who loves to cook. But I just know I’ll want to touch it.

The Home Hub comes with an anti-smudge, oleophobic coating on the 7″ display which repels oils and is fingerprint resistant and the fabric back is hydrophobic allowing you to wipe it clean. But even that still isn’t enough to satisfy me.

Similarly, the Lenovo Smart Display (in both sizes) and the LG WK9 both make no mention of IP ratings, or even splash proofing. Only the JBL Link View comes close to satisfying my need for some sort of protection offering an IPX4 splashproof rating which in theory will protect against water spray.

I’ve been wanting something like a Smart Display or Home Hub in the kitchen for years. Samsung’s Family Hub refrigerator with built-in display is about closest to where I want to be – but it lacks a lot of the options I want, and frankly I don’t need a new fridge.

In short, I see a lot of promise from Smart Displays and I’ll definitely be getting a Home Hub to play with, but it’ll be going on a shelf in the living room rather than on my kitchen bench.

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    Got a Lenovo Smart Display already, and it’s perfect for the kitchen. The speakers works just as good as my harman/kardon onyx speakers and on some stores you can get giftcards or special discounts. Got a $20 giftcard when I bought it in bestbuy.


    no good to me. As usual, HTC have overlooked their HTC U Play users. Last year, Oreo was rumoured in many places for the U Play, but checking with HTC Australia, not so. I can’t even update to Nougat from Marshmallow ! The quality was lacking from the day I bought it. About 3 months after new purchase, the speaker started distorting. A quick google will show this was also an issue of the old HTC 10. I think my next phone will be a Nokia. I refuse to touch Samsung,as they too, abandoned their once faithful S3 brethren when… Read more »


    I’m tempted to buy a Home Hub for the kids to play with in place of our existing Google Home. They often like to watch and listen to music videos on You Tube, but the computer is in the office so this would have them doing it out in the lounge where we can keep a slightly closer eye on them from a cyber safety perspective. Unfortunately, that will probably end up with me adding a You Tube Music subscription to our existing Spotify subscription just to get rid of the annoying ads… 🙁

    Daniel Narbett

    I’ve been trying to figure out what’s the difference between one of there and an Android tablet?

    Daniel Narbett


    Jamie S

    An Android tablet has a camera

    Jamie S

    But seriously, if you have an old android tablet laying around you can convert it to a Google Home hub using the Google Home apps new UI and set it up to show photos from Google Photos when it goes to daydream mode in display settings. My kids are able to control the Hue lights etc.


    Way to look at this is less a nailed down tablet, and more a chromecast/home with a screen. It has relatively little processing power, it’s just a renderer.

    Daniel Narbett

    Cool thanks all