Before there was the Nest Home — heck, before there was even the Google Home Hub — there was the Lenovo Smart Display. The smart screen was far and away the nicest of the original Google Assistant screens, and the partnership between the two companies continues to be a fruitful, including the recent Smart Clock, a purpose-built bedside alarm clock.
With the Smart Display 7, announced today at IFA in Berlin, the company has slimmed down both the screen size and overall device footprint. At seven inches, it’s smaller than both of the original models (eight and 10 inches, for the record). It’s a rare step down in screen size for a new generation, but given the relative freshness of the category, there’s probably a fair amount of trial and error here.
The design language looks nice enough — perhaps a bit more generic than the first generation with its faux wood panel backing but the fabric speaker grille is a nice touch that fits in nicely with the rest of the Google Home line. Feature wise, you’re getting pretty much what you’ll get with the rest of the Assistant smart displays — Youtube, answers, smart home control.
Of course, Lenovo’s got more direct competition this time out from Google itself, in the form of the Nest Hub Max. And when it comes to products like these, it’s can be tough to compete with first parties. That said, at $130, it’s a full $100 cheaper than Google’s version, which is compelling in and of itself. The device ships next month.