GOOGLE HOME has been a massive success for the search company.
The service which powers Google Nest devices has brought together thousands of smart home devices under a single interface.
But INQ has heard a number of reports that the integration between Google Home accounts and certain brands is… well, a bit iffy.
The story started with our own issues when linking a Hive account to our Google Home account. On investigation, we discovered that the fault has been ongoing for some time.
It manifests by doing absolutely nothing. You choose 'Hive', type in your credentials, then there's a bit of waiting before you find out that the app has done precisely nothing - account not integrated.
We did some more sniffing around and discovered that Philips Hue and Eufy (Anker's smart device division) are also having similar problems.
For Hive, some enterprising users have discovered a workaround, involving uninstalling Home, rolling the main Google app back to stock, reinstalling Home and trying again.
In other words, a faff. Previously, some users had found that using an iOS device worked, but more recently we've heard that has stopped working too.
Meanwhile, Hive has said as recently as this morning that the problem is fixed - quickly countered by users saying 'erm - dudes - no it isn't'.
One Hive forum user said: "I had a phone call from Hive support last night who feel that this should now be resolved. I currently have the services connected and am reluctant to un-link them and end up stuck, so I haven't tested this myself."
Sufficed to say that someone else did. It didn't.
Anker is yet to come back to us (unusually - it's normally very quick) whilst the Philips Hue issue has been reported at 9to5Google as going on for several months.
So what's the problem? Well, from the sound of the workaround, it appears that Google has been mucking about with the API under the hood again.
We've asked Google to confirm this but they're yet to come back to us with a statement.
If it does turn out to be an API change, Google has form. A Microsoft employee recently claimed that Microsoft's switch to Chromium for its Edge browser was for much the same reason - compatibility with Google's constant fiddling under the hood made it hard to keep compatibility.
We'll keep watching this story, and update when we have any official word from the offending parties on a fix. If you're having similar problems with an integration we haven't mentioned, please do get in touch. µ
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