We are now entering the second generation of Smart Home hubs and most of the new entrants have a display attached to them. There has been an expected surge in the number of Smart Home and IoT devices, and most of them now integrate Google Assistant and Alexa support. Consequently, more and more people are now getting used to interacting with their devices using voice commands. Amazon and Google are naturally eager to take lead and want their assistants to be on most devices. 

Lenovo’s Smart Clock is Google Assistant-powered clock that goes “beyond just telling time”. It is also currently the lowest price smart display or rather home assistant with a display in India. It’s a cute clock that you may keep on your nightstand, use to fetch and play music, or to turn on your smart bulb, and other things people most frequently use their assistants for.

Is it the smart clock you should buy? And if you do, how much will you be missing out compared to Nest hub or the Amazon Echo Show 5 (Review)? Let’s answer all such questions in our review: 

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Lenovo Smart Clock Review: Price and Specs

Model Lenovo Smart Clock CD-24501 (ZA4R0023IN)
Display 3.97-inch (480 x 800) AntiGlare, LED Backlight 
Processor 1.5GHz MediaTek MT8167S quad-core (Cortex A35)
RAM 1GB LPDDR3
Storage 8GB
Connectivity Bluetooth 5.0, WiFi
Price in India Rs. 5,999

Lenovo Smart Clock Review: Design and Display

Clad in soft-touch fabric, the Lenovo Smart Clock has a 4-inch rectangular display and an almost conical body. It’s stylish, cute and cozy and will nicely fit on your nightstand without taking much space and without being a distraction. 

The display quality isn’t much to write home about, but considering how little we had to actually interact with the screen, the quality didn’t prove to be a major peeve point. There are no navigation buttons on the screen, but you may swipe from the left edge for ‘back’ while going through the settings. 

You can choose between several clock faces by long pressing on the screen and even customize them to an extent. These also include a Google Photos clock face (that we love) and a weather clock face. The fonts are large which makes it easy to grasp time from a distance. 

The watch has an ambient light sensor and can grow dim enough to not be annoying when you switch off the lights and turn in at night. The display, however, is brighter than I would want it to be during the day time. 

On the rear, you will find a USB port that you may use for overnight charging (and this proved to be remarkably useful!), a toggle to electronically disable the microphone, and the power input. There are volume controls at the top, and you can press ‘up’ and ‘down’ simultaneously to reset the clock. 

There’s no camera, and that should perhaps make it more appealing to privacy-conscious buyers.

Also Read: Tile Mate Review – A Reliable Bluetooth Tracker

Lenovo Smart Clock Review: Features and Audio

The display on the Lenovo smart clock is quite limited in terms of what you can do. On the upside, it can show weather information, can serve as a photo frame (Google Photos), and is good with time-piece related functions – clock, timer, approaching alarms, etc. 

Just as Echo Show 5, the Smart Clock also has Sunrise Alarms that gradually brightens up the screen as you approach the wake time. And when the alarm rings, you can stop it by saying ‘stop’ or snooze it by simply tapping on the top edge (customizable). You can choose between different alarm ringtones on the clock but not add music of your choice or from other music apps. 

The Lenovo Smart Clock is more like Google Home Mini but with a display instead of status led lights. For instance, if you ask Google to show you what cicadas or primrose look like, the Lenovo Smart Clock will respond by reading out the Wikipedia description, but will not show you an image as the Nest hub does. 

And as Nest Hub, you can not cast YouTube or other video streaming apps to the Smart Clock, and considering the size of the screen, I don’t think we would be using it for videos even if we could. 

You can still cast music from popular apps and that’s good enough for us. The Clock has two passive radiators and can get quite loud. The Audio isn’t as rich and full as we’d want it to be, but it certainly sounds better than what regular phones do and we tend to use it a lot for music at night and in the early morning – when we are lazing in our bed, that is. 

The volume controls on the top aren’t very refined, the audio is either too low or too loud. Thankfully, the Volume control is better via Google Home app.

You may also use the Lenovo Smart Clock as a Bluetooth speaker and for everything else that Google Home mini does –  to control your smart home devices, to get cricket scores, latest news, etc. 

Also Read: 16 Best Google Home Tips and Tricks That You Should Know

Lenovo Smart Clock Review: Verdict

If you have used the Nest Hub, the Lenovo Smart Clock might feel very limited, but it’s actually not. The objective here is quite clear – It’s after all a bedside clock. And it does all that we frequently use Google Assistant for without being unnecessarily distracting.  

That USB charging port proved incredibly useful because since we didn’t have a free socket near our bed. The clock responds well to voice prompts and though there is no dashboard to control connected devices, we didn’t face any issue controlling our smart equipment. The audio is good enough for our bedroom and the Google Assistant is smarter than all other assistants out there, especially when it comes to understanding Indian context and accents, or even Indic languages like Hindi. 

As a prospective buyer, you must not confuse this with Assitant powered Smart Display (that Lenovo sells for a higher price in India). This is a Smart Clock and not the kind that you’d use in your living room or in your kitchen. For such use, the Nest Hub is much better suited.

If you are open to both Google and Alexa ecosystems, the Echo Show 5 does a bit more and is modeled around the same smart clock concept. It costs a good 3K extra, though. 

Pros 

  • Less distracting and apt for your nightstand
  • Loud Audio output
  • Google Assistant is really smart
  • Can show Google Photo albums

Cons

  • Display quality
  • Limited display-related features

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