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Google Nest Mini won’t activate? Here’s what to do

Google Nest Mini wont activate

It’s strange that the system of seamlessly adding devices to your Google Home got worse and worse over time for first-party products. But that seems to be the case for many users who can’t seem to work it out. For some, Google Nest Mini won’t activate and Google Home asks for Device Utility which is, in all honesty, an underwhelming solution and an unnecessary extra step.

To make bad even worse, Device Utility doesn’t work for many as you can find out on the various forums where users report the problem. Also, just look at the app rating on the Play Store and you’ll see for yourself. Luckily, we have a few steps we can recommend to fix the problem at hand and we listed them below.

How do I activate my Nest Mini?

You should be able to activate your Google Nest Mini with the Device Utility app. However, ideally, you wouldn’t want to do anything with this tool and we outright suggest resetting your Google Nest Mini and setting it up anew via the Google Home app. On the other hand, if you want a more thorough approach, check the detailed instructions.

1. Use the Device Utility app to set up Nest Mini

The first thing you should try is to download the Device Utility app to activate the Google Nest Mini before you can set it up in Google Home. If the Device Utility is not available on the Google Play Store, you can get the APK from APK Mirror and sideload it on your Android.

Another thing worth mentioning is the presence of your Google Nest Mini in the old Home. If you moved and didn’t reset the device to factory settings, it might still be in the old home in Google Home. So, make sure to delete the old home in the app or remove the speaker.

On the subject of Device Utility, once you install the app, try activating the Google Nest Mini (or Google Home Mini) in the app.  One Reddit user suggested following these steps:

  1. Reset your Google Home to factory settings as explained in the last step.
  2. Restart your smartphone.
  3. Enable Airplane mode on your smartphone.
  4. Now, open Device Utility and, if you don’t see Google Nest Mini, open the Google Home app.
  5. After that get back to Device Utility and the Google Nest Mini should appear.
  6. Once you set up the device, you can safely uninstall the Device Utility app.

If you still can’t activate the speaker, try the next step.

2. Use a different smartphone

Believe it or not, this problem is most prominent when users try to set up the Google Nest Mini or Google Home Mini with Google Pixel devices. Users claim that they solved the problem by installing Google Home on an iPhone or an alternative Android device. From there, you can set up your mini smart speaker and should be able to control it later on with your main device without any issues.

Based on reports, only Pixel devices have issues with setting up Google Nest Mini and require the Device Utility app which is crazy considering that both devices are made by Google.

3. Clear the data from Google Home

The Google Home app for Android and iOS is the main companion app in the Google Home ecosystem. More times than not, it works as intended but it’s not immune to bugs or local issues. The first thing you can do on Android is to force stop Google Home and clear the local data from the app.

Here’s how to clear data from Google Home on Android:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Select Apps.
  3. Choose Google Home from the list of available apps.
  4. Tap Force stop.
  5. Now, tap Storage.
  6. Select Clear data.Google Nest Mini won't activate
  7. Confirm and restart your Android.
  8. Open Google Home and check if you can add the Google Nest Mini in Add+ > Set up a new device > New Device.

If you still get the prompt that your Nest Mini won’t activate, try reinstalling the Google Home app on your Android or iPhone.

4. Reinstall the Google Home app

You can also try reinstalling the Google Home app and setting up the Nest Mini again. Alternatively, you can download and sideload an older version of Google Home from the APK Mirror’s Google Home section. Just don’t forget to enable app installation from unknown sources before running the APK.

Here’s how to reinstall the Google Home app on your Android:

  1. Tap and hold on to the Google Home shortcut. Any shortcut will do.
  2. Tap Uninstall in the contextual menu.
  3. Open Play Store.
  4. Search for Google Home and install the app.

And this is how to reinstall the Google Home app on your iPhone or iPad:

  1. Tap and hold on to the Google Home shortcut.
  2. Select Remove App.
  3. Tap Delete App.
  4. Then navigate to App Store and install Google Home again.

6. Factory reset Nest Mini

Finally, if none of the previous steps worked for you, we highly recommend resetting your Google Nest Mini or Google Home Mini to factory settings. This action won’t delete any data and it’s pretty straightforward as long as you know the reset sequence.

Here’s how to reset your Google Nest Mini to factory settings:

  1. Plug the speaker into the power outlet.
  2. Wait for it to boot and then turn off the mic using the side-mounted physical switch.
  3. Press and hold on to the middle of the Nest Mini for 10 seconds until you get the voice feedback that the device will reset. On Google Home Mini, press and hold the “G” button on the bottom for 10+ seconds.
  4. Once you reset the speaker and it reboots, open the Google Home app on your smartphone.
  5. Enable Location services and Bluetooth on your Android/iPhone and open Add+ > Set up a new device.Google Nest Mini won't activate
  6. Choose New Device.
  7. Follow further instructions to configure the Google Nest Mini.

And, on that note, we can call it a wrap. Thank you for reading and don’t forget to leave your thoughts, critiques, or praises, in the comments section below.

Picture of Aleksandar Ognjanovic

Aleksandar Ognjanovic

Managing editor at Mobile Internist. @lemmingspain My fascination with mobile technology, particularly Android and iOS, began years ago and continues today. I'm captivated by the constant evolution in the smartphone industry and its impact on our daily lives, always anticipating the next big innovation. That’s the main reason why I found myself writing instructive content on the subject for users who are not as familiar with all the bells and whistles.
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