The Google Nest Mini is one of the most affordable consumer products to come out of Google's workshop. This tiny puck-shaped device is capable of a lot more things than you would expect from a smart speaker.
I have a couple of these dainty gadgets spread all around my house and office, and they come in handy quite often. But what about the problems, you may ask; is it the perfect smart speaker?
And the answer is a resounding NO! The device does flaunt problems every now and then, including the eponymous issue, abrupt unresponsiveness.
If Google Nest Mini is not responding, check the internet connection and refresh both the device and the router. If the issue still persists, you may have to do a factory reset, but with caution. Unresponsive Google Nest Mini is mostly due to temporal bugs and inconsistencies that crop up in the device after an update or because of an unstable internet connection.
Usually, when the device becomes unresponsive, the four LEDs on the top turn white and stay like that.
I have explained in detail the troubleshooting steps that should help you fix your Google Nest Mini if it is not responding.
Restart Google Nest Mini Immediately
If the issue has already taken over your device, instead of waiting for things to revert to normal, immediately restart the device.
A restart will clear any inconsistencies and piled-up bugs on the speaker. If you have been running your speaker for a long time, a refresh will make it a bit more efficient and fast.
Now, you can restart the system in a couple of ways. The best and the Google recommended one is to perform a power cycle test on the device.
A Power cycle test requires you to unplug the device off the power and leave it unplugged for a few seconds.
Then, press and hold the center button for a few seconds and release it. Doing so will remove all static charges that have been piling up in your Nest Mini.
After performing this step a couple more times, plug back the device and check for the issue.
You can also reboot the device using the Google Home app. Follow these steps to do so. A quick word for first-time app users, make sure to connect both the host device and the speaker to the same network.
1. On the Google Home app, click and open your Nest Mini device.
3. Tap on the Settings icon on the top right side of the app.
4. Click on the More icon(the three-dot icon) and then select Reboot.
After doing so, check for the issue.
Check the Input Power Situation
Another area of concern for the stalling of the device is its power solution. An inappropriate input may make the device exhibit unresponsiveness or even total shutdown.
Always make sure that you are using the right cables and adapters for powering the Nest mini. If you are using generic products for powering the Nest Mini, immediately replace them with the manufacturer-supplied ones.
A third-party cable or adapter may not be suitable for the device as it may not supply the required input for the device. Underpowered devices do tend to be unresponsive at times.
Another thing to keep in mind is to never power a full-fledged device, like the Nest Mini, directly through your TV. Your TV may not be rated to output the required power for such devices.
In the long run, there is a possibility of damaging both the devices with such powering solutions.
You may also want to check the output power of the outlet to which the Nest Mini is connected. Sometimes, the output power from an outlet may not be constant, leading to issues on the device.
You can do so by making use of a multimeter. If you don't have one handy, try switching the outlet. Then check for the issue.
Issues with the Internet
A good internet connection is vital for the optimal working of the device. If you don't have a good and running internet connection, chances are, the device will seem unresponsive.
It is a good idea to check and verify the speed of the internet before doing anything else on the device. And the best way to do so is through a speed testing software.
Download or access the software through a browser on your smart device. Then, check the speed and latency of the network using the software.
If the speeds are not satisfactory, try refreshing the connection through a power cycle test.
Unplug the router and leave it idle for a few seconds. Press and hold the power button(or any other button) for a few seconds. Perform this step a couple of times.
Plug back in the router and then check the speed once more. If the speed and latency of the network are back to normal, connect the Nest Mini to the network. Then, check for the issue.
If the issue persists, check the next tip.
Switch to a Higher Bandwidth
Now that you have checked and refreshed the router/modem, let's talk about the effects of traffic on the traditional 2.4 GHz WiFi, shall we?
In the 2.4 GHz network band, as the number of devices connected to the network increases, so does the latency of the network. Increased latency leads to lower speeds and higher buffering time.
The answer to this issue, the 5 GHz band. This 5 GHz band doesn't have any of the issues that trouble a traditional 2.4 GHz band.
The 5 GHz band can accommodate a large number of devices without compromising the latency of the network.
The Google Nest Mini does support a 5 GHz connection. Hence, try switching the network as a possible fix to the issue.
To do so, follow these steps on the Google Home app.
1. After you have opened the Nest Mini tab on your Home app, tap on the Setting icon.
2. Tap on the "Device Information" option, and then select the WiFi option.
.4. Select the Forget option to disconnect from the network.
Upon reaching the Home screen, you can now connect the Nest Mini to the higher bandwidth connection.
Disable the Network Filters and Check the Wifi Band Allocation
Network services and filters, like VPNs and IP address masking software, do tend to limit the speed and the latency of the network.
If you're having issues with your internet, try disabling these filters and then try connecting to the internet.
Most of these filters and software applications can be disabled right from the host PC. Others may require guidance from the ISP(Internet Service Provider) to be disabled.
After disabling the filters, make sure to restart the router/modem before accessing the network.
Next, let's talk about WiFi channel allocation.
Sometimes, being allocated an inferior channel can cause the connection to be slow and laggy. You can check and change the channel through these steps.
1. Connect the WiFi Router to your PC through an Ethernet cable or, if your Router has the provision, a USB cable.
2. Open the browser on your PC and enter the IP address of your Router. You can find the IP address on the bottom side of the Router.
3. Enter the login credentials and then locate and find the WiFi channel menu, generally found under the Advanced Settings tab.
4. Here, you can switch the channel of your WiFi connection.
5. The best channels for the 2.4 GHz WiFi band are 1, 6, and 11. In the case of the 5 GHz band, channels 36, 40, 44, and 48 will do the job.
6. Confirm the selection and Exit the portal.
What to Do When Your Google Assistant Becomes Unresponsive?
It's not looking good if your Google Assistant decided to call it quits and be dead set against listening to your commands. If that's the case, there are a couple of things you can try to rectify the issue.
The absolute first thing to do is to check whether the Mute switch on the Nest Mini is turned ON or not. A good indication of the Mute mode is the Orange color of the LEDs on the Nest Mini.
Try switching back to listening and then check for the issue.
If the issue persists, try these tips instead.
Train the Assistant to Your Voice
If the Assistant cannot recognize your voice, you might have to train it to do so. Sometimes, the Assistant may need a bit more encouragement, so as to say, to operate and recognize your voice quite clearly.
The process is quite simple; follow these steps on the Google Home app to make the Assistant familiar with your voice.
1. On the Home app, click and open the User icon on the bottom right corner of the app.
2. Select Google Assistant and then click on the More Settings icon.
3. Then, click on the Assistant option.
4. Tap on the Voice Match option.
5. Select the "Teach your Assistant your voice again" option.
6. Click on Retrain to start the process.
Follow the onscreen prompts and speak the words on the screen clearly to train your Assistant.
Check the Recording
Although a cause for concern, Google records all our voice commands and stores it in its cloud storage. You can access these voice recordings to check the level of recognition accuracy and the state of the device's microphone.
Sometimes, the microphone on your Nest Mini can get damaged, resulting in inaccurate recognition of commands. The best way to verify this issue is by checking the voice recordings captured by the microphones.
Follow these steps on your Google Home app to check your recordings.
1. On the Home app, click and open the User icon.
2. Click on My activity.
Here, you can see the various recordings made by the Assistant. Check the voice recording for any issues.
Hard Reset the Nest Mini
As a last-ditch effort, try resetting your Nest Mini to the factory defaults. A factory reset will clear all the nascent bugs and stale files that have been piling up in your device over time.
A word of caution- a factory reset will clear off all your personal preferences and settings.
You can reset the Nest Mini in a couple of ways. First, let's look at how to reset the device using the buttons available on the Nest Mini.
The first-gen Home Mini does have a dedicated Reset button next to the power port. Press and hold this button until the device turns OFF and back ON again.
In the newer Nest Mini devices, first, you will have to turn ON the Mute switch. Then, press and hold the Center button until the chime sound starts ringing. This sound indicates the start of the reset.
Another method to reset the device is through the Google Home app.
Follow these steps to reset the Nest Mini through the Google Home app.
1. On the Home app, tap on the Nest Mini.
2. Click on the Settings icon. Then, click on the Menu icon(three-dot icon) on the top right corner of the app.
3. Tap on the Factory Reset option to start the process.
You will have to reconfigure the device as if new. Check for the issue after doing so.
An unresponsive Smart speaker is as good as a piece of brick in the sense that it can do nothing.
Make sure to try out all of these steps before throwing it out of the window.
You may also want to check and verify the distance between the Router and the speaker. Make sure that both the devices are in close proximity to each other.
For optimal recognition of your commands, Google recommends that you be within twelve feet of the speaker, so keep that in mind.
Ultimately, if all the above-mentioned fixes were inept at solving the issue, contact the customer services of Google for further assistance.
You might also want to look into exchanging it for a new one as a probable fix. Only you need to be within the warranty period to be eligible for an exchange.
Frequently Asked Questions
How to update the Google Nest Mini?
All Google Nest devices automatically update themselves whenever an update is made available. You only have to ensure that the device is properly powered and connected to a stable network.
Can I see what devices are connected to my Google Home?
Yes, you can see the list of devices connected to your Google Home device through the Google Home app. Go to Home app>WiFi icon>Devices.
Can I use Google Nest mini unplugged?
No, you cannot use the Nest mini unplugged because it is an active powered device, meaning it requires live power to operate. You can use third-party powering bases that are available on Amazon as a portable solution, but it is recommended not to do so.