Google’s Pixel Tablet has received decent reviews all around. Its dock? Not so much.
The Pixel Tablet is an Android tablet that can also double up as a smart home Hub, thanks to its magnetic charging speaker dock. The magnetic base of the dock attaches to the back of the tablet via four pogo pins.
Once connected, the dock charges the tablet wirelessly and also acts as a stand that can be adjusted to different angles. The dock also enables the Ambient Mode on the tablet, which turns it into a smart hub-like smart home device that can show you personalized information, control your smart devices, and play music or videos.
The dock also has two built-in 10W speakers that sound better than the tablet’s speakers. According to Google, the dock’s speakers are four times louder than the tablet’s. However, the dock has some limitations as well.
The dock is completely useless without the Pixel Tablet. It doesn’t have any buttons or indicators that would let you use it as a standalone speaker or smart device. Secondly, as spotted by a Mastodon user, via AndroidPolice, the dock’s speakers don’t work when you have something connected to the USB port of the tablet. This means that you can’t use accessories like USB hubs or keyboards when the tablet is docked.
It is likely that the pogo pins are acting like a USB connection, and that the Pixel tablet is not capable of handling complex USB routing.
It remains to be seen whether this is something that Google can fix with a software side update.
Image credit: @alsutton