Lenovo Smart Clock Essential review: A useful bedside smart speaker

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Andrew Gebharat / Tips Clear

The Lenovo Smart Clock Essential, despite being the newest addition to the Lenovo lineup gadgets, looks slightly dated to use Google Assistant. Designed for your nightstand, the Smart Clock Essential is a trimmed-down version of Lenovo’s previous smart watch, Which itself was a trim-down smart display.

First and foremost Smart speaker With capabilities like Google’s own Nest Mini ($ 30 at Best Buy) Smart Speaker, Smart Clock Essential has a simple LED screen so you can check the time and weather at a glance. There is a nightlight in the back, a few buttons to set alarms or adjust the volume at the top and that’s pretty much it.

While I think you might find it on a shelf in a radioshek in the 90s, I did not turn from lack of physical attributes. This is arguably a more focused product than its predecessor — and one that promises it — bringing Google Assistant to your bedside in a simple yet functional alarm clock. If you are looking for a smart alarm then to top it all with a $ 50 (£ 50, AU $ 59) price matching the Nest Mini and Lenovo Smart Clock Essentials.

like

  • Is a simple but useful demonstration
  • Responsive mix and good sound quality for its size
  • Sunrise uses its night light for alarm

do not like it

  • The display also shines on its Dimpest
  • The physical controls are not intuitive and do not offer much customization.

General Google Assistant repertoire

Google has yet to release a first-party smart speaker with a time display Amazon Echo Dot With Clock, Which leaves room in the lineup for third-party gadgets: Enter Lenovo Smart Clock Essentials.

I would classify the original Lenovo smart watch as a smart display compared to a smart speaker. You can swipe through different screens to check traffic and weather. You can view pictures or pull feeds from your connected cam. It lacked the video, smart home control and lots of other depth offered by a full smart display like Nest Hub. ($ 90 at Best Buy), But it was simplified for your bedside and I felt it was enough for a reasonable price.

The Lenovo Smart Clock Essential is definitely closer to a smart speaker than a smart display, as the screen is not interactive and really only shows time, weather and temperature. As such, it works as a missing piece of Google’s lineup. The $ 50 price helps make it attractive. Amazon’s generic Echo dot Like the Nest Mini it cost $ 50. The Echo Dot with the watch is $ 60.

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Before you set it, it looks even more like a 90s gadget.

Andrew Gebharat / Tips Clear

Because it has the feature of Google Assistant, you can issue several types of voice commands in Smart Clock Essentials. You can control your smart home, check the weather, ask a trivia question, and play music from multiple streaming services including Spotify, Pandora and YouTube Music.

You set it up with the Google Home app, so you can also sync it with other Google smart speakers like the Nest Mini for synced playback. Setup is simple and only takes a few minutes. Later, expect that your smart clock will be ready to answer a large number of intuitive questions and orders.

bedside manner

In addition to voice commands, the top of the Smart Clock Essential has buttons to adjust the volume, stop playing or music, and to check or set your alarm. The back has a microphone and a switch to mute the USB port, in addition to the port for the power cord. A ring around the back panel lights up as a nightlight.

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The night light is a nice touch.

Andrew Gebharat / Tips Clear

The device is a half-and-half pyramid with a gray fabric cover and a 1.5-inch, 3-watt speaker. It looks just like the original smart watch, even smaller.

You can set an alarm with your voice and you will see an indicator show on the screen. Tap the alarm button to scroll through the alarms you have set. You can also turn on the night light and adjust the brightness with your voice.

Once the alarm starts ringing, you can either smooch above or give a voice command to snooze. You can also say “stop” without the commonly needed wake word (“Hey, Google”, or “OK, Google”) to turn it off.

Thanks to the voice command, you can do a lot to customize your alarm. You can ask Google to snooze for a specific time. You can set your alarm to play a specific music playlist. You can also use Smart Clock to trigger grouped commands a routine.

That said, there is a slight lack of physical control. You can set an alarm with a button, but it is not intuitive. You cannot customize the alarm at all or adjust the night light without voice commands. If you don’t like using voice commands, you can easily find Better Alarm Clocks for Less.

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Physical controls do not offer much customization.

Andrew Gebharat / Tips Clear

I too was nervous to find a screen cast in my room at night. LED numbers adjust in brightness based on the ambient light in the room, but even in their shortest time, they still made my room a touch brighter at night. This also happened with the Echo Dot and the original Lenovo Smart Clock with the watch, so I have yet to test a smart alarm that gets this right.

When I’m nightpacking, the default snooze length if you smack on top of the alarm is 10 minutes. I’d like less and you can’t adjust it. So it’s not really a strong, feature-filled alarm clock. It is just a smart speaker with a good clock display.

However, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that this is a version of my beloved Sunrise alarm. The sunrise alarm slowly intensifies as you get closer to your waking time to get out of your sleep. I like this feature because it helps me Wake up rest.

Lenovo Smart Clock used its display display to animate a shiny wake up. I don’t think Essential will have anything similar to an ordinary LED, but it uses its night light to the same effect. The few nights I used it to wake me up I actually felt more relaxed one morning, but seeing that the night light is somewhat dim, I didn’t notice the effect the other morning.

Rock in the bedroom

As a smart speaker, Lenovo Smart Clock Essential fares have given its size and price well. The mix from the next room in my apartment heard my commands, and the sound quality sounded surprisingly good.

It’s a small, $ 50 speaker, so don’t expect a symphony, but I never noticed distortion after playing a wide variety of music genres at maximum volume. The bass was clear and the vocals were crisp, so this is definitely enough to fill a bedroom with rock. I also forgot that while I was listening to Sandman and startling my cat with some wicked air guitar riffs.

Should you buy it

The Lenovo Smart Clock Essential is an attractive device for $ 50. It gives you a Google Assistant smart speaker, in which you are a fan of Google and envy. Echo dot with clock. The night lights and sunrise alarm feature are nice touches. It looks great for its size and offers all the features you’d expect from a Google Assistant smart speaker.

While this is not correct, most of my issues with the Smart Clock Essential are minor. It is not an earth-shattering device, but if you want a bedside smart speaker, it is a solid one.

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