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The second-generation Nest Hub is now receiving a Fuchsia-based upgrade from Google, making it the third gadget to formally use the in-house operating system.
After years of work on its own, not-Linux operating system that was created from scratch, Google finally released Fuchsia in 2021 as an upgrade for the Original Nest Hub smart display. The primary smart display experience stayed largely the same despite replacing the whole underpinning architecture. A similar update method was taken by the larger Nest Hub Max last year, which included Fuchsia without making the change clear to owners of typical smart displays.
The second-generation Nest Hub, which was introduced in 2021 and came with a Soli radar sensor for tracking sleep, is now receiving a Fuchsia update, according to Google. The new OS will roll out gradually, starting with a select subset of users who have signed up for upgrades through the Google Home app’s Preview Program. The update should become more broadly accessible after a few months of open testing.
It should come as no surprise that Google wants this update to pass mostly unnoticed as the Nest Hub (2nd Gen)’s feature set won’t change. The version number, whether on the display itself or in the Google Home app, is the best method to determine whether your smart display has received an update. Your Nest Hub has been updated if the “Technical information” tab in Settings indicates a “Fuchsia version.”
This most recent Fuchsia upgrade makes sense and is something we’ve long been looking forward to. All three of Google’s current smart displays will have been converted from Cast OS to Fuchsia once the process is finished.
However, given the impending release of the Android-powered Pixel Tablet, which is expected to replace the Nest Hub series, the timing is rather puzzling. In a related development, Google has stopped providing updates for third-party smart displays, and later this year, Nest Hub displays will stop receiving many apps and games that use the Assistant.
When all smart displays have been updated, we already have a good idea of where the Fuchsia project will go next. The operating system will, appropriately, once more replace the Linux-based Cast OS, this time on Nest speakers.
Those who have been following the project for a while are aware that Fuchsia has the potential to be useful for a lot more than simply smart homes. Like Windows, Linux, and macOS, it is actively being developed as a “general-purpose” operating system. Even now, the company is working hard to create a mechanism for Linux and Android programs to operate “natively” on Fuchsia.
Hopefully, Fuchsia will just use the Nest ecosystem as a testing ground and stepping stone before moving on to other applications.
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Google emphasized the “long-term” nature of Fuchsia in its announcement, touched on the project’s broader objectives, and urged developers to visit the project’s official website for more information.
Fuchsia is a long-term project to create a general-purpose, open source operating system, which we have been developing in the open for years. This is part of those continued efforts, and fuchsia.dev will have the latest information on the team’s work.
– GOOGLE SPOKESPERSON