What time is it? Time to get a smart clock
If you're anything like me, smartphones have a habit of displacing all sorts of other tech in your life: cameras, calculators, remote controls — there really is an app for all things. For years I used my phone as an alarm clock, and that was a totally acceptable solution. A few weeks back I learned about a great deal on the Lenovo Smart Clock, and promptly picked one up — and let me tell you, this thing quickly won me over. Now with Black Friday shopping upon us, you've got a great opportunity to pick up a Smart Clock for yourself for a mere $35.
I'll be the first to admit that this product class was a tough sell for me at first. I like Assistant on smart speakers just fine, and although I find Nest Hubs really useful, already I find myself wishing Google didn't dumb down their interface quite so much. If even a Nest Hub needs to do more, why even look at a further-shackled Smart Clock?ANDROIDPOLICE VIDEO OF THE DAY
For as trite a sentiment as it is, sometimes less really is more, and with what it offers the Lenovo Smart Clock is a perfect fit for my bedside table. Here I don't need the distraction of local news highlights, or really videos of any kind, and this gadget's happy to oblige. The petite 4-inch touchscreen gives me just enough information and interaction to be useful without being distracting. With a swipe I can control bedroom lights, set a new alarm, or tweak my settings to an existing one.
It seems a little so obvious that it's almost stupid to say, but I missed having a clock by my bed. I don't think it was ever a conscious decision to get rid of one, but with phones doing so much and wanting to keep them within reach, a simple clock just felt superfluous. I'm happy to welcome one back, as I'm enormously enjoying just rolling over and seeing the time right there, rather than blindly reaching for a phone in the dark (or having a way-too-late conversation with the Assistant).
There are a couple little complaints I have from the few weeks I've been using the Lenovo Smart Clock. As we noted back when reviewing it, the speaker's not the best, so I still keep a Nest Mini around in the same room for music. I'm also a little concerned that the touchscreen interface makes it a little too easy to hit snooze or turn off the alarm. I'll admit there have times I've appreciated how low-effort tapping snooze can be, but I've also definitely turned off the alarm many times by accident when I only meant to snooze.
I managed to luck out and grab my Lenovo Smart Clock for super-cheap when Walmart was clearing out stock earlier this fall, but now that I'm a convert I've got no problem recommending even at the price you can grab it this Black Friday weekend, of just $35. Back when it was $80 we balked at the price, but it's just impossible to be take issue at this level. And if you're looking for a little extra functionality, you can grab the second-gen Smart Clock with its wireless dock for only $70.
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Stephen has some feelings about phones. Strong feelings. Feelings you wouldn't understand.