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Home / Tips and Tricks / For the best Google Home music setup, do these steps right away with Apple Music, Spotify and more

For the best Google Home music setup, do these steps right away with Apple Music, Spotify and more



google-nest-mini-lab

Google teased a significant amount of extra bass and overall better sound from the Nest Mini smart speaker, released last year.

Juan Garzon / CNET

Google home is quite the digital chameleon – it could be one speakerphone, a game center, a audiobook library or a smart home hub, and it can change in and out of those things and more with just a word. But without a doubt, the most popular form that Google Home takes for most people is that of a limitless jukebox with an almost infinite song library. Google Home can play practically any song you ever wanted to hear – and can play it all throughout your house – with only one limitation: the music service or services you link to it.

Linking your music subscriptions to Google Home may seem like a straightforward task, but it’s one that far too many people put off until “later” in the rush to set up their smart speaker. However, if you do that, your speaker may not play the exact music you ask for, especially if you’re already paying for a streaming service like Spotify or Pandora. And if you’ve avoided having to choose a default music service because you’re using Apple Music, which wasn’t supported, now you have no excuse – as of December, Google Home is now officially supports Apple Musicalso.

Whether you already have a Google Home or Nest speaker or you’re installing one for the first time, taking five minutes to make a few simple adjustments can mean the difference between limited access to the music you love and an almost unlimited world of musical possibilities.

Here’s how to find out which plans will give you the best music experience on your Google Home or Google Nest smart speaker, and how to set them up so they work together seamlessly.

spotify-logo-2

Spotify is the most popular music streaming service in the world and is compatible with Google Home and Nest smart speakers.

Angela Lang / CNET

Here’s how to find the settings menu you need

If you don’t link the music services you use to the Google Home app, you will end up jamming to a general YouTube Music account with limited playback options and annoying ads. The same even if you link another paid service but leave YouTube Music as the default.

Anytime you request a song, artist, genre, or station without determining which service to use, Google Home will automatically try to play your request from your default service first, so you’ll want to use the best one you have.

Here’s how to link your music services to Google Home:

1. Open the Google Home app and tap it Settings button.

2. Tap in the bottom half of the list Music (for Sirius XM, tap Radio).

3. Find the services you are using and tap it link icon (the chain link icon to the right of each service).

4. Tap the screen that appears Link account.

5. Enter your username and password for the service you are linking to and tap Log in.

Once you’ve linked all your services, simply tap on it circle to the right of the one you want to use as your default. (Note that SiriusXM cannot be set as the default as it is a broadcast service.) You can also choose No standard, but with so many services available for free, why would you?

iphone-x-play music

Google Home added Apple Music compatibility in December 2020.

Angela Lang / CNET

You can link up to 6 music services, but only 5 can be made by default

There are a total of six music subscription services that you can link to your Google Home account, all but one – SiriusXM Radio – can be set as your default. Three of the services available – Spotify, YouTube Music, and Pandora – offer free levels that let you personalize your listening experience (playlists, favorites, etc.), but force you to suffer from audio ads instead of charging you a monthly fee bring. There is another trade-off for using one of the free services: you cannot choose specific songs to play, only “stations” built around requested songs.

Otherwise, the paid options are all more or less the same in their music libraries and other features, but with a few minor additional differences that may affect you in some way (e.g. YouTube Music Premium also cancels ads when you watch YouTube videos).

pandora-2

Pandora was one of the first music streaming services to offer custom radio stations, but has since grown into an on-demand service similar to Spotify.

Angela Lang / CNET

These are your six options for the Google Home music service:

  • Spotify the top spot remains CNET’s list of the best music streaming servicesin part because it has the most versatile free tier. That said, if you’re thinking of coughing up $ 10 a month for Spotify Premium, consider YouTube Premium for the bonus of ad-free YouTube videos.
  • Apple Music was relatively late to the music subscription party, arriving nearly four years after Spotify debuted in the US. Still, Apple Music caught on quickly and now has an estimated 72 million subscribers worldwide (compared to 130 million Spotify) with access to a music library as extensive as any other premium service.
  • Youtube music is a relative newcomer, but the library is just as robust as any other. As a huge bonus, the $ 10 per month YouTube Premium plan not only cuts the commercials out of your music, but also removes ads on YouTube videos.
Sirius

SiriusXM regularly offers massive discounts on Nest Hub smart screens with an included six-month subscription to the radio service.

SiriusXM

Now that you’ve squared your music situation on Google Home, we recommend taking your listening experience to the next level The new Google Home media controls. Do you want to set a timer on your music playback? Use Google Home’s new scheduling feature to set a time limit. And to get the most out of your smart speakers, make sure you’ve downloaded all the different ones apps you need for Google Home.


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