Every time I walk into my WeWork office, a notification pops up on my phone.
It’s from the Google Home app and it tells me that a device on my Wi-Fi is casting Spotify. Funny thing is, I don’t have a Google Home device at my office.
Essentially, the office I work in has a ton of different companies all under the same roof (it’s called WeWork, I love it, you can check it out here if you’re curious) and, as it turns out, some of those companies have Google Home speaker devices in their offices playing music. Now, since we all are on the same WeWork provided WiFi (even though it’s secured we all have the password and are connected to it, of course), Google thinks we’re must all know each other and should therefore have access to each other’s speakers, TVs, and any other Google Home device on that same network.
Also, oddly enough, there is also no way to disable this. I tried to get a fellow WeWorker (?) to kick me out of their casting device (a small Google Home Mini) and there just wasn’t a way for them to do so.
Despite this, there was at least one setting we found that you should have turned off to at least limit the number of people who are aware they can mess with your devices.
At Least Don’t Notify Everyone That They Have Access
First, open your Google Home app.
Tap on your Speaker, TV, etc. (yes, this flaw allows me to control your TV, too).
Tap the gear at the top right.
Scroll down and turn off “Let others control your cast media” option.
While, again, this won’t stop someone from messing with your speaker/TV/etc., it will at least not put a notification at the top of everyone’s phone connected to the Wi-Fi essentially begging them to do so.
Now, it isn’t that big of a deal, of course. The only thing anyone can do (as far as I can tell) is control with your volume, maybe change the song, reboot/reset the device, etcetera–nothing threatening your privacy or financial well-being. They can, however, just be a real pain in the ass.
Again not a big deal, but maybe something Google should consider changing in an update? What do you think about it? And how many of you are now messing with everyone else’s Google Home at the office? Let me know below and don’t forget to sign up for my weekly email newsletter for more tech tips, tricks, videos, etc.
Thanks for reading!