Google Nest Hub vs Amazon Echo Show 5

By reviews / 30. April 2020

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Google Nest Hub vs Amazon Echo Show 5

Considering a smart speaker with a screen? It’s the newest tech toy on the market, bringing more visual entertainment and information to the growing trend of having a digital butler.

You might be deciding between Google Nest Hub and Amazon Echo Show, but which one should you choose and why? I’ll put them head to head here to see which platform comes out on top.

Design, Size & Styling

There’s a clear winner here and it doesn’t take much to see. While the Amazon Echo Show is wide and fat and bulky, the Google Nest Hub is sleek, compact and… pretty.

I score this one for Google Nest Hub

What can Google Nest Hub vs Amazon Echo Show 5 do?

By and large these devices perform all the same basic functions:

playing music (Google Play Music, Amazon Music, Spotify)
answering questions
You can make video calls
setting timers
controlling nearly any Smart Home gadgets like lights, thermostats, door locks and more
telling you about your day; see more below
getting news, weather and traffic info
making conversions: money, measurements, time
make phone calls
look up phone numbers (and call them)
add items to to-do lists and create reminders
make calendar appointments; depending on your OS, see below
Google Nest Hub has a long list of apps and other devices it’s compatible with, while Amazon’s Show does too… it just depends on the specific thing you might want to control or connect.

Both the Google Nest Hub and Amazon Echo Show stack up here evenly. It’s a tie.

Where your choice might be made for you is in the things they *don’t* both do…

What don’t they both do?

You can use the Google Nest Hub to control your Chromecast TV, but not the Show.
Echo Show will let you order stuff off amazon just by asking, while Google has no built in shopping platform.

Best Assistant at answering questions & executing commands

I put the Echo Show and Hub head to head in a series of commands:

How much is 1 stick of butter in cups
How do I say please move your car in Vietnamese
Turn all my lights pink
Give me a news update
Find a thai restaurant near me
Tell me a joke

Best Assistant Personality & Customization

Google Assistant has a nice, natural sounding voice with a human tone and cadence. Her interactions can often be punctuated with little extras, like a rim shot after a silly joke.

Amazon’s Alexa still sounds stiff and robotic and stilted.

Here, my pick is for Google Assistant, hands down.

Screen & Video quality

The screen on Google Nest Hub is 7″ LCD touchscreen display, and a resolution of 1280X800. You’d think that’s basically 720p HD, but the screen is sharp, detailed and bright. The Hub also adds something called Ambient EQ light sensor. The sensor detects the amount of light in the room and adjusts the screen brightness and colours so it looks natural and right.

The Amazon Echo Show 5 has a 5.5” video screen. It too is clear and bright and easy on the eyes. There’s also adaptive brightness built in here too.

This one is a tie.

What videos can I watch?

On Amazon Echo Show you can watch anything on Amazon Prime TV. Wheee! You can also watch YouTube.

On Google Nest Hub, you can watch YouTube. Boooo.

Winner: Amazon Echo Show 5

Sound Quality

Google and Amazon have both been making pretty big strides in making these devices sound good. Amazon’s even brought out a Subwoofer for its Echo devices.

When it comes to overall sound quality between these devices, though, that bulkier design helps Amazon.

The Echo Show’s speaker sounds good and strong. The bass is pretty rich on this speaker, and it’s more than loud enough for my space even at just half the volume level. The sound overall is full and rich and I’m more than happy with what I’m getting from it.

The Google Nest Hub, still sounds good, though it leans a bit toward the high end when it comes to sound quality. I listened to jazz and it sounded nice, but when I put on more bass-heavy music, say something like Dre’s Next Episode, it was still pretty thin on the bass.

Neither of these speakers is what audiophiles would call high fidelity. It’s a tie on audio quality here.

Overall:
Choosing a winner here is tough, because these devices are quite similar when it comes to specs. Where you’ll break your tie seems to be in which platform you prefer; so if you have a Google Pixelbook and Pixel phone, it makes sense to keep your ecosystem compatible.

If you’re an Apple user who doesn’t want to splash out of the big and expensive (and screenless) HomePod, your choice is for Amazon’s devices, which have more compatibility with your ecosystem.
If price is your deciding factor, here’s the cost:
Price

Amazon Echo Show 5 is $99CAD
Google Nest Hub is $169CAD

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