Ambient Mode on Google Home Hub

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When your smart display is not being used, it can quietly keep you entertained. You can choose from your favorite albums in Google Photos, enjoy the art gallery, or select from a variety of full-screen clocks to show while your device is idle.

Ambient Mode settings

To adjust your Ambient Mode settings, follow the steps below.

– Open the Google Home appGoogle Home app

– On the home screen, tap your Google Home Hub’s iconand thenDevice settings

– Scroll down the Device settings menu, then tap Ambient Mode.

Google Photos

With Google Photos you can enjoy the photos that mean the most to you on your Google Home Hub. In order to enjoy your personal photos, you need to have a Google Photos account.

Setting up Live Albums

Live Albums take the work out of updating the photos on your Google Home Hub by letting you create an album that automatically adds photos of the people who matter to you most. You can share a Live Album with anyone you want, just like any other album in Google Photos. For example, you can create a live album for your family, and all of your family members can automatically add their own photos of family members to it whenever they’d like.

To set up a Live Album in the Google Home app, follow the steps below.

Android:

– Open the Google Home appGoogle Home app

– On the Home screen, tap your Google Home Hub’s iconand thenDevice settings.

– Scroll down the Device settings menu, then tap Ambient Mode.

– Tap Google Photosand thenSelect family & friends.

– Tap each face you want to include.

– Once you’re finished selecting people for your Live Album, tap Turn on.

Your live album photos will now appear on your Google Home Hub.

You can also create Live Albums within the Google Photos app.

iPhone & iPad:

– Open the Google Home appGoogle Home app

– On the Home screen, tap your Google Home Hub’s iconand thenDevice settings.

– Scroll down the Device settings menu, then tap Ambient Mode.

– Tap Google Photosand thenSelect family & friends.

– Tap Open to allow the Google Home app to access your photos.

– Tap each face you want to include.

– Once you’re finished selecting people for your Live Album, tap Done.

Adding or removing albums

You can add or remove albums from the Home app by opening up your device and selecting Personalize ambient, and then selecting Google Photos.

From this section you can do the following:

Create a Family & Friends album

If you have face groups enabled and the Google Photos app installed on your phone, you will have an option to create an automatically updating album that contains what Google Photos thinks are the best pictures of the people that you most care about. To do so, press the “Select Family & Friends” tile in the album picker. Then select the faces of the people whose pictures you want and press Turn on and confirm the album creation. You will then see a “Family & Friends” album appear in the album picker, already selected for you. This album will automatically update with new pictures of the people you selected whenever they get added to your Google Photos collection.

Select Recent Highlights

Google Photos can auto-select what it thinks are your best recent photos and show them on your display. To enable this, select the “Recent highlights” album. This option will only show if you have high quality recent photos in your collection.

Select Favorites

If you have marked at least 4 photos in your collection as Favorites, then this option will also appear in the album selection screen. If you select it, all the photos that you’ve marked as Favorites will show on your display.

Select an existing private or shared album

Your private and shared albums are also available to select. Shared albums are only shown if they have a name.

Photo curation

Google Photos automatically attempts to select what it thinks are the best photos from your Live Albums and Recent Highlights. From your existing private and shared albums, Google Photos attempts to remove objectively bad photos (blurry, poor exposure, low resolution, near duplicates) but will not otherwise curate the contents of your albums. No curation at all is done on your Favorites.

Note: Photos that used to show in Ambient Mode may no longer show due to the automatic photo curation. To guarantee that a photo shows, mark it as a Favorite in Google Photos, and then select the Favorites album from the album picker. You need to have at least 4 photos marked as Favorites for that option to appear.

Portrait Photos

Portrait photos are now shown in a side-by-side format, with two related photos. Google Photos uses a number of signals to relate photos, including if they have the same person in them (in territories where face grouping is enabled), were taken close together in time, or were taken close together in location.

Interacting with photos on Google Home Hub

As the photos are displayed, you can navigate through the photos as you wish. To go to the next photo, either swipe left or say “Okay Google, next photo.” To go to the previous photo, either swipe right or say “Okay Google, previous photo.” While the photos are showing, you can ask questions like “when was this taken?” or “where was this taken?” to learn more about the photo.