Lenovo Unveils New Smart Display Powered By Google Assistant
It is hard to gauge which trend will catch on in a certain industry. Over the years, we’ve seen smartphones move in a similar direction for a period of time until a new aspect catches people’s attention. After the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus dropped the headphone jack, we saw more smartphone makers following suite so much so that Samsung, LG and OnePlus appear to be the only flag bearers of the beloved 3.5mm headphone jack. 2018 is expected to be the year of AI and machine learning, and not just in smartphones.
Amazon and Google have been dominating the smart home, especially smart speakers industry for a while now. Thanks to the affordable Google Home Mini and Amazon Acho Dot, it has become easier to enter the smart home ecosystem. Lenovo and Google unveiled a new smart home product, a smart display with built-in Google Assistant. Similar to the Amazon Echo Show, this new smart display from Lenovo does everything a smart speaker can do, with a display.
Also, unlike the Echo Show, it can playback YouTube videos. This smart display doesn’t run on Android or ChromeOS instead, it is running Android Things, a variant of Android that’s custom-designed for IoT. Apart from Lenovo, JBL, LG, and Sony will also be making smart displays with built-in Google Assistant running the same software.
Google showcased a small video revealing the capabilities of these smart displays. Google Assistant on smart displays can do a lot of tasks that the Echo Show does as well, like show you photos and calendar, give directions, recipes, and do video conferencing. This will all be handy if you are a Google Services user and part of the whole Google/Android ecosystem.
While third-party app support is on the way, the Lenovo smart displays won’t be available right away. The 10-inch Lenovo Smart Display starts at US $249.99 and the 8-inch model starts at US $199.99, and both are expected to be available early this summer.