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Can I Use The Google Nest Audio Outside?

Last Updated Jan 26, 2022
outdoors under a canopy

Everyone is outside during the summer, kids running around the pool, your uncle grilling some sort of meat on the grill, your aunt and family just sitting around gossiping.  Everyone loves a good cook out but what is a cook out without music?  It is always nice to be able to share music and have something to party to or something to have as background noise.  But is the device you are using best suited for the task?

The Google Nest Audio shouldn’t be used outside as it isn’t waterproof or even water resistant.  It is sensitive to dust, and if left in direct sunlight, overheating.  The Google Nest Audio is designed to operate indoors, in a dry environment.

Although the Google Nest Audio is not designed to be used outside, it is possible to enjoy music using the Google Nest Audio if the proper precautions are made beforehand to make sure that the Google Nest Audio is operating in an environment that will keep it working for a long time.

Out And About

The Google Nest Audio isn’t likely to be going with you on the bus or to the beach any time soon.  The device is powered via a power cable that requires a powered wall socket to operate.  The Google Nest Audio lacks an internal battery.  So, unless you are carrying a portable battery and converter with you, you will be tethered to a power outlet.

The beach is also not a great place for the Google Nest Audio as it is very sensitive to dirt, dust, or sand.  The Google Nest Audio is meant to be more of a bookshelf speaker than a portable bluetooth speaker.  The textured cloth on the speaker would get dirty and sandy.  Not to mention, the speaker’s case isn’t designed to protect against dirt and debris.

Direct sunlight is another problem.  The optimum operating temperature, according to Google’s Safety & Regulatory Guide for the Google Nest Audio, is between 32° to 95° F (0° and 35° C).  So, if left in direct sunlight, your Google Nest Audio could easily overheat and get damaged from your day time trip.

Parties Closer To Home

Even though the Google Nest Audio isn’t great as a portable speaker, it would be ok to use outdoors at home, but only if temporarily and as long as it was far from any sort of water or possibility of getting wet. The Google Nest Audio speakers wouldn’t make great permanent outside speakers as they would be very sensitive to the moisture and humidity changes in the air.  

If you wanted to just have the Google Nest Audio sitting outside and were willing to run a powered extension cable to power it, it would make a great addition to any party.  A great feature of the Google Nest Audio is that you can connect two Google Nest Audios together to create stereo sound.

With two Google Nest Audios paired together you get a fuller, more encompassing sound profile.  Filling a small space with great sound, especially for the price.

A Few More Tips When Using Your Google Nest Audio Outside

Here are a few tips if you decide that the only device available is the Google Nest Audio and you just have to have music going in the background of your next barbecue: 

  • Keep it away from dirt, sand, and small debris
  • Keep it away from water (especially if it starts raining)
  • Keep it out of direct sunlight
  • If you must have it outside, keep in under an umbrella or in the shade
  • Place your hand periodically on the Google Nest Audio to check if it is overheating and, if so, unplug it and bring it into a cooler environment immediately

Final Thoughts

There are numerous waterproof bluetooth speakers on the market that would fare better than the Google Nest Audio.  Not many will have the same sound fidelity in the same price range as the Google Nest Audio, but the Google Nest Audio’s prime spot isn’t outside audio but inside on a bookshelf or counter.  

The updated Google Nest Audio speaker now is directional, whereas the previous versions were omnidirectional.  This allows the speaker to direct sound better than its predecessors, especially when two Google Nest Audios are paired together for a stereo effect.  

The small footprint, ability to pair two together, all without the need for an expensive or large amplifier, and the ability to connect wirelessly to a phone and wifi network make it an easy choice for indoor audio.  Just maybe find a more portable friendly bluetooth speaker for your next outdoor get together.

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