A week before the October 4th event, we received a tip that a Google Home competitor to the Amazon Echo Show is in the works. Featuring a 7-inch screen, it would reportedly support a number of Google services. Today, a teardown (via Android Police) of the latest beta version of the Google app contains references to such a device and details its functionality.
Codenamed “Quartz,” references to this device did not appear in our teardown of version 7.14.14 of the Google app on Tuesday. The next day Google released 7.14.15 (and later 7.14.16) to the beta channel where these references are found.
It’s unclear whether “Quartz” is the device’s codename or whether it belongs to a category of devices, like “Bisto” for Assistant-enabled headphones. If it’s the former, the naming is a departure from the current audio-focused Home devices: “joplin” for the Home Mini and reportedly “biggie” for the upcoming Home Max. In fact, the previous rumor suggested that the device would be codenamed “Manhattan.”
Our rumor of a Google Home device featuring a screen noted features like “YouTube, Google Assistant, Google Photos, Netflix, and video calling.” Additionally, it could control Nest and other smart home devices.
Strings in the Google app confirm that YouTube playback functionality with a layout that can display who Uploaded the video, Comments, Likes, Views, and more:
<string name=”image_viewer_video_uploaded_by”>Uploaded by:</string>
Other strings confirm the presence of controls like next, pause, play, and previous:
Other strings suggest a web browser, Google Maps, a photo viewer, weather, timers, and the ability to show recipes. Most of these features are already found in Google Assistant, while another string suggests voice commands as a way to operate the device, besides the display:
<string name=”quartz_suggestions_prompt”>Try saying…</string>
Meanwhile, a “restscreen” would service as a homescreen of sorts when the device isn’t active. It would display the time, date, weather, notification, and suggestions.
/layout/quartz_rest_screen_suggestions.xml /layout/quartz_restscreen_background.xml /layout/quartz_restscreen_carousel.xml /layout/quartz_restscreen_date.xml /layout/quartz_restscreen_notification_count.xml /layout/quartz_restscreen_time.xml /layout/quartz_restscreen_weather.xml /layout/quartz_restscreen.xml
Another interesting line directly references Google Home and implies a connection between the two devices:
<string name=”quartz_connection_chirp_disconnected”>No local connection to Google Home</string>