Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you

Lenovo lights up the smart home with a clock, frame

Decorating the smart home may mean the return of bedside clocks and wall-worn picture frames.

Typically when we talk about the smart home, the first thing that comes to mind is a smart speaker — Hey Google, or Hey Alexa! — and then maybe a smart light, because they’re the easiest entries into the world of the smart home.

But they’re not the only ways you can smarten up your home, even if they are obvious ones.

Lenovo has been dabbling with the bedside clock for a number of years, trying out a Google-equipped pint-sized smart display, but it’s not the only attempt, and this year is launching something a little more family friendly with a kid-styled look at the bottom.

The latest attempt is the Lenovo Smart Clock Essential, a bedside clock with an LED screen that isn’t full colour, but comes with support for Amazon Alexa built-in, with support for a custom light dock at the bottom to provide colours, plus the ability to turn the mostly black LED screen into a pair of eyes for something cute.

Lenovo’s other attempt at smartening the home may go on the walls, with a Smart Frame. Not quite the Google Nest Hub that can work as a smart picture frame, it’s a 21.5 inch Full HD digital canvas measuring an equivalent of 15×24 inches, and featuring Android 10 and a Mediatek chip underneath, with 16GB storage.

It can go horizontal or portrait and support Google Photo, but it can also skip Google’s connection altogether and have art and photos be uploaded directly to the Lenovo Photo Frame, with virtual sticky notes able to be added to make it a sort of digital home hub of sorts. It will even support Instagram directly on the frame soon, we’re told.

Interestingly, the Lenovo Smart Frame is set for release this month, available from $599 in Australia, while the Smart Clock Essential and its Ambient Light Dock doesn’t yet have a price or release date, though hopefully we’ll hear more soon.

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