I have been using Nest thermostats for the last seven years and they are pretty amazing products. One thing they lack, though, is HomeKit support. Starling Home Hub is a turnkey solution for bridging the gap. It brings all Nest-connected home products to HomeKit, including thermostats, cameras and more. Today, the firmware update 9.0 opens more Nest products in the Apple ecosystem. After installing the update, Google Nest speakers and Google Nest smart screens support AirPlay for music, podcasts, etc.
Google added Apple Music support to Google Assistant products last year, but it’s just fine to play Apple Music through your voice. I enjoy using AirPlay to play content from my podcast app and even from Apple Music. I think choosing a playlist from my iPhone or even my Mac is preferable to starting it from Siri (Homepod) or Google Assistant (Nest speakers).
I was already running a beta version of the 9.0 upgrade from Starling Home Hub and set up some Google Nest speakers and a smart screen to try out this feature specifically. When I added the products to Google Home, they were immediately available as AirPlay destinations. I set up two Google Nest speakers as a stereo pair in the Google Home app, and it appeared as a target in AirPlay.
If you have a Nest-smart screen, you will even see full metadata and illustrations on the screen when you also play Airplay. It works so well, you would think that Google had built-in support for AirPlay.
The update is free and only takes a few minutes to install. Starling Home Hub is still a rock solid product that is a turnkey solution for adding Nest products to HomeKit for a single one-time payment of $ 89. While you can certainly get some of the basics about Nest and HomeKit using the home dock, but this AirPlay support is another reason why I’m glad I bought the Starling Home Hub last year. It is constantly being improved, and now all of your Nest audio products can be used as AirPlay targets after installing the update.
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