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I've been living with the Google Home Max and Apple's HomePod side by side for almost 6 months, and they both have one major problem

Business Insider | Feb 11, 2019, 11.01PM IST

Google Home Max HomePod

Sam Maller

  • I've been testing the Google Home Max and Apple's HomePod side by side for nearly six months.
  • Both devices have their pros and cons, but they share a larger issue: They both listen in and speak out of turn constantly.
  • At this point, I like both devices equally, but if you're concerned about your privacy, don't buy either one.

For going on six months, I've been conducting an experiment at my apartment: I have Google's Home Max and Apple's HomePod living side by side in an attempt to find out which one is better.

The Google Home Max was announced in September 2017. I've been using it for a while, and I've documented my love for the device time and again.

The HomePod - Apple's answer to the Home Max, the Echo Plus, and other high-end smart speakers on the market - was announced earlier, in June 2017, but got a delayed start and didn't make it to market until last February.

The two speakers cost about the same ($350 to $400), bear a similar look and feel (rounded, relatively blob-like, available in two colors), and do mostly the same things (play your music, answer questions, control your smart home). I was curious what they'd be like side by side, if one would far outpace the other in terms of usefulness and effectiveness.

I expected a clear winner, or at least some very steep competition.

But what I found over the course of several months was something a bit more disturbing.

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