How to Set Up Google Home Music Playback

Connect your favorite service and say, "OK Google, play music"

Unpacking and setting up a Google Home device is just the start. After you set it up, you can use Google Home to control other devices, get information, shop, and, with its smart speaker capabilities, access to several streaming music services. Use Google Home for Spotify, Apple Music, and more.

This information applies to Google Home smart speakers, hubs, and smart displays with Google Assistant built-in from a variety of manufacturers, including (but not limited to): Google, Klipsch, JVC, Lenovo, LG, Onkyo, Polk Audio, Sonos, and Sony.

Music Services Available for Google Home

The core music services included in the Google Home app include:

  • YouTube Music: Free and paid versions.
  • Spotify: Free and paid versions.
  • Pandora: Free and paid versions (the U.S. only).
  • Deezer: Subscription to the paid version required for use with Google Home (U.S. Canada, U.K., France, Italy, Australia, and Germany).

Additional music services include iHeart Radio and TuneIn Radio. More music services may be available at the discretion of Google.

To listen to music from the above services, you need to first sign up for a free or paid account/service. From there, you can link them to your Google Home.

How to Link Google Home to Music Services

Before you get started with the Google Home music setup, make sure your mobile phone or tablet is on the same Wi-Fi network as your Google Home device(s).

  1. Open the Google Home app. From the home screen, tap the Account icon located in the bottom right corner.

    Google Home App on Smartphone Home Screen
  2. Verify that the Google Account listed is the one linked to Google Home. To switch accounts, tap the Down Arrow to the right of the account name. You can then verify or make any needed changes on the next page.

    Google Home App – Change/Add/Manage Account(s)
  3. After verifying your Google Account is the one linked to Google Home, or making any needed changes. Tap Settings > Services > Music.

    Google Home App – Settings, Services, Music Services
  4. To choose your default service, tap the empty circle to the right of the service. When you ask Google to play music, it will stream it from your selected default service. However, you can play music from any of the other available services provided you have linked your established accounts for those services. 

    Google Home App – Available Music Services

    Even if your default music service is Pandora, you can still listen to music on other linked services by saying, "Ok Google, play rock on (name of service)". 

  5. Music Service Linking Options. For Spotify, Pandora, Deezer, or other available services, you'll need to link your accounts. To connect your account, tap the Link icon and complete the prompted link account/sign-in process.

    Google Home App – Link Music Service – Spotify Example

    YouTube Music is automatically linked with your Google Account to Google Home.

  6. If you wish to unlink a music service account, tap UNLINK under the music service app.

    Google Home App – Unlink Music Service – Spotify Example

Using Multiple Google Home Devices to Play Music

If you have multiple Google Home devices on the same account, all the music services will be available on all your devices once they're set up in the Google Home App.

If you have your Google Home linked to other devices, like Sonos speakers, there may be slight differences regarding what services you're able to play on those devices.

For example, while Google Home devices are compatible with both the free and premium versions of Spotify, Sonos is only compatible with the premium version. This means that if you have the free version of Spotify and command your Google Home to play music from Spotify on a Sonos speaker, your Google Home will tell you the free Spotify service is not compatible and provide you with info on how to get the paid version. 

How to Create a Google Home Speaker or Audio Group

If you have multiple Google Home devices, you can play a different music service on each device at the same time. You can also assign two or more Google Home devices to a group and simultaneously play the same service on all your devices/speakers. 

  1. Make sure all your Google Home devices, compatible speakers, smartphones, and tablets are connected to the same Wi-Fi network.

  2. Open to Google Home app on your smartphone and go to your Account page. On your Account page, tap Settings > Home.

    Google Home – Settings > Home
  3. Tap Add > Create speaker group.

    Google Home – Add Speaker Group
  4. Tap each device you want to add to the group, then tap Next. On the next screen, enter a name for your group, then tap Save.

    Google Home – Select Speakers for Group/Name Group

    You can change the number of speakers in a group or un-designate an entire speaker group at any time going through the above steps—just uncheck your device selections and save your changes again.

Play Music From a Smartphone on Google Home with Bluetooth

You can also listen to music from most smartphones on a Google Home device via Bluetooth streaming. Just follow the pairing instructions in the Google Home app on your smartphone, or say "OK Google, Bluetooth pairing."

Commands to Control Music Playing Through Google Home

Once you have all your music services setup and have also designated your default service, you can use voice commands to play your favorite music.

Basic voice commands all need to start with "OK Google," or "Hey Google," followed by your exact request. Basic commands include:

  • "OK Google, Play Music" (Google Home will choose the service)
  • "Hey Google, Play Taylor Swift music on Pandora (or another service)."
  • If you have iHeart Radio or TuneIn Radio linked, you can say "OK Google, play (name of the radio station)." 
  • "Hey Google, turn the volume up (or down)." This can also be expressed as a percentage or a point range.
  • "OK, Google, what (artist, station) is this?"
  • "OK Google, stop (or stop music)."

Additional and advanced voice commands may vary by free or paid service. These commands include things like play album, skip forward, back, previous, repeat the song (play it again, play song again), add a song to a library, shuffle, like/dislike song, play songs similar to this, and more.

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