The Lenovo Smart Clock Essential is an affordable Google Assistant device that has a display and is designed specifically for the bedroom. With an MSRP of $49, it’s the same price as Google’s screenless Nest Mini, but we expect the Lenovo Smart Clock Essential will be discounted prices as we head into the holiday shopping season. It is available now at Lenovo, BestBuy, and other major electronic retailers.
The Lenovo Smart Clock Essential’s monochrome display shows the current time, day, outdoor temperature, and a weather icon. There is also an icon that indicates if you have an alarm set for the next morning. With Google Assistant, you can set multiple repeating alarms. For example, you can ask Google to set all to wake you at 7 am on weekdays and 8 am on weekends. While you can also do this with screenless Google Assistant devices, the display reduces the number of times you may need to say “Hey Google” in the middle of the night and disturb your partner.
The back of the Lenovo Smart Clock Essential has a built-in night light and a USB charging port to charge your smartphone. There’s also a microphone mute switch if you want to ensure privacy or prevent accidental Google Assistant activations. There are four buttons on the top of the device to control volume, music, and snooze the alarm.
As with all Google Assistant devices, you can use the Lenovo Smart Clock Essential to control compatible devices and answer queries. However, this device doesn’t have a color display and cannot show you answers or play videos. If you want that sort of functionality, you’ll want to invest in one of Google’s Nest Hub devices or Lenovo’s Smart Clock, which it released last year and featured in the above video. Priced at $79, the Lenovo Smart Clock’s display does a lot more and is especially useful if you use Nest Cams for security or to monitor your kids.