Google is slowly catching up to Amazon in the smart display space, and, after the release of several third-party displays and Google’s own Home Hub, it’s time for a new form factor. First out of the gate is the Lenovo Smart Clock, which takes all the software you’d find in a Google Smart Display and shrinks it down to a tiny form factor. It’s the Google ecosystem’s answer to the Echo Spot.
The previously released Lenovo Smart Display comes in 10- and 8-inch form factors, and the Google Home Hub has a 7-inch display. The Lenovo Smart Clock is down to a tiny 4-inch display, and it seems positioned as a bedside alarm clock based on the press images. Unlike Lenovo’s bigger smart display, which has a hard plastic back, the Smart Clock totally apes Google’s cloth-based design, looking just like a Google Home product.
Lenovo was nice enough to include a real spec sheet for its smart display, so we know this has a 4-inch, 800×480 touchscreen, a 1.5GHz MediaTek 8167S SoC (that’s four Cortex A35 cores and a PowerVR GE8300 GPU), 1GB of RAM, and 8GB of onboard storage. Under the cloth back there’s a 1.5-inch 3W speaker (with a peak power of 6W) and two passive radiators. There’s a set of volume buttons on the top, a mute microphone switch in the back, and a power port. One nice touch is an extra USB-A port on the back, which is meant for charging your phone on a bedside table.
The software should be the usual Google Smart Display package, but squished down into a smaller form factor, so you’ll be able to issue Google Assistant commands, listen to music, see calendar events, and control your smart home. It looks like there are a few extra features in the software, though. We spotted a few ambient clock faces that aren’t on the other Google Smart Displays, and the spec sheet says it supports the “Google Assistant’s gentle wake-up routine,” which we first saw on the Pixel 3’s Pixel Stand. When it’s morning, the display will slowly light up like a sunrise, with the idea being that it might gently wake you up before your alarm starts blaring.
The Lenovo Smart Clock will cost $ 79 ($ 50 cheaper than an Echo Spot!) and should be out in the spring.