Lenovo Updates Smart Clock for Google Photos, Better Conversation
The Lenovo Smart Clock received its first major update since its initial launch a few months ago. The new features take better advantage of the device’s Google Assistant integration and addresses several of the shortcomings we cited in our initial review.
More Photos, More Interactions
The $80 smart clock is designed for bedside tables with a 4-inch screen which could display one of four clock-face options. With the new update, these options have significantly expanded. The clock can now connect to and display images from Google Photos or photos provided by Google. It operates like an electronic photo frame, doing a slideshow of photos from the user’s Google Photos account. It can also connect to cameras that use Google software such as Nest cameras to show things like who is at the door.
The other major update is to the Google Assistant element of the smart clock. Users can set up a Continued Conversation mode with the device. When they start a conversation using the Hey Google wake word, the device will be able to ask follow-up questions and won’t need to be reactivated as often. The idea is to make conversations with the voice assistant more natural and comfortable to users, encouraging them to use it more often.
The new features certainly broaden the scope of the Lenovo Smart Clock, and without raising the price. However, unlike some of its more expensive competitors, the Lenovo Smart Clock can’t stream videos or handle video chat still. The Echo Show 5 offers 5.5 inches of screen space and Alexa rather than Google Assistant, but the big difference is that it includes brings the video streaming and chat features. It also only costs $90 and is frequently discounted down, making the choice between the two a matter of brand loyalty and feature preference rather than cost.