The latest version of the Lenovo Smart Clock Essential has undergone big changes outside and inside. For the latter, it now comes with Amazon Alexa.
Lenovo has announced a third-generation model of its popular Smart Clock Essential and the smart alarm clock/speaker ditches the Google Assistant in favor of Amazon Alexa. Amazon already has several smart speakers and displays of varying designs and prices but there are other Alexa devices made by third-party manufacturers, some of which offer features you won’t find on Amazon’s own products.
Lenovo makes several cool smart home gadgets. While a lot of its products come with Google Assistant, it also has a fair share of devices that ship with Amazon’s Alexa smart assistant out of the box. Some products are even announced in both Google Assistant and Alexa editions. By providing users with both options, it is able to capture customers that are locked into Google or Amazon’s ecosystem.
The Lenovo Smart Clock Essential has undergone a redesign and it now closely resembles the Lenovo Smart Clock 2. However, its LED display is only capable of showing time, date, and weather info. It is also no surprise that there is no camera on this device but there is a switch on the back to mute the microphones. Lenovo wraps up the design by draping the smart clock in a soft touch fabric with the option for users to choose between Misty Blue and Clay Red.
Goodbye, Google! Hello Alexa!
The biggest change which isn’t visually noticeable is the removal of the Google Assistant. Lenovo has replaced it with Amazon’s Alexa which explains why the official name of the device is Lenovo Smart Clock Essential with Alexa Built-in. If you own an Alexa-powered device, operating this should be easy as it works the same way. With the Alexa voice assistant, users will be able to set alarms, reminders, and timers. They will also be able to control compatible smart home appliances including smart plugs and lights and stream their favorite podcasts and audiobooks. The speaker is still 3W but it should be loud enough to fill a small room. The Smart Clock Essential still has a full-sized USB port on the back for charging phones but the nightlight is now gone.
For those who still want that, Lenovo is selling an ambient light dock that is available for $29.99. The light dock has eight light modes that can be cycled through by tapping the top of the speaker or via voice command. If you want a more functional nightlight, the wireless charging dock of the Smart Clock 2 which has an integrated nightlight will also work. Lenovo has said that compatibility with Support for this dock will begin in February 2022. With this accessory, users not only get a nightlight but a wireless charger for compatible phones, watches, and earbuds. The Lenovo Smart Clock Essential with Alexa Built-in will be available for purchase later this month for $59.99.
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