Amazon Echo Show vs Lenovo Smart Display vs Google Home Hub…


The original Amazon Echo show released last year but has since been refreshed to sport a more modern aesthetic, improved speakers and a better screen.

Meanwhile, Lenovo released its Smart Display in October and was the first device to run a new operating system from Google designed to make consumer lives more simple.

Following the debut of Lenovo’s product, Google has since released its Home Hub that represents its own foray into the emerging smart display market.

While all three are a substantial addition to any home, Express.co.uk has compared all three to see which is truly the smart display champion.

Design and display

Although the Echo Show, Lenovo Smart Display and Google Home Hub all attempt to deliver similar functionality for users, they take very different approaches when it comes to design.

The Amazon Echo Show comes with a 10.1-inch display with a resolution of 1280×800 and offers a great viewing experience thanks to its vibrant colours and admirable viewing angles.

Although the Lenovo Smart Display comes with the same 10.1-inch size panel, it offers a superior resolution of 1920×1200 meaning content overall looks crisper.

It is worth noting the Smart Display also comes in a smaller 8-inch model that has a resolution of 1280×800.

The Google Home Hub has the worst quality and smallest display of the three, only offering a 7-inch panel with a resolution of 1024×600.

Amazon Echo Show certainly looks like the most contemporary device of the three but credit should not be taken away from the Lenovo Smart Display that oozes an extremely premium feel thanks to its white front and bamboo rear.

Amazon Echo Show vs Lenovo Smart Display

The original Amazon Echo show released last year but has since been refreshed (Image: Amazon • Google • Lenovo)

Google Home Hub

The Google Home Hub has the worst quality and smallest display of the three (Image: Google)

The bamboo back panel is only available on the 10-inch version of the product and avoids being tacky.

Instead the material feels nice to the touch and feels at home in most living rooms and kitchens.

However, it is worth mentioning the rear of the product is not symmetrical thanks to a noticeable bump that acts as housing for its speakers on one side.

The Google Home Hub is a much smaller device overall thanks to its reduced screen size but still looks premium thanks to its fabric stand that comes in chalk, charcoal, aqua and sand colours.

All three pieces of hardware certainly do not push any boundaries when it comes to reducing screen bezels.

Instead, the trio all have hefty borders around their displays but the offerings from Lenovo and Amazon are less intrusive because they are black instead of the white offered on the Google Home Hub.

Lenovo Smart Display

The Lenovo Smart Display comes in both 8-inch and 10-inch varieties (Image: Lenovo)

One of the biggest differentiating factors that separates Google’s offering from the Smart Display and Echo Show is its distinct lack of a front-facing camera.

That means the hardware is not capable of performing video calls, functionality that is present on the other two.

Amazon Echo Show and the Lenovo Smart display both come equipped with a 5-megapixel front-facing camera but the latter goes a step further by allowing you to cover it up with a toggle.

Such an option is perfect for those with any privacy concerns and eliminates the need to tarnish the hardware with duct tape.

Sound is one of the most important aspects of a smart display and Amazon has clearly taken note.

The retail giant has improved the audio fidelity of its Echo Show by placing two 2-inch drivers inside it that is accompanied by a passive bass radiator.

Amazon Echo Show

The Amazon Echo Show takes the crown when it comes to loudest and clearest audio (Image: Amazon)

Meanwhile, the Lenovo Smart Display comes with a 2-inch full range speaker and two passive tweeters while the Google Home Hub only has a single speaker inside.

The Amazon Echo Show takes the crown when it comes to loudest and clearest audio – sound also fires from the device evenly rather than on the Lenovo Smart Display where speakers are only placed on one side of the hardware.

This means when using the Echo Show in a smaller environment such as a kitchen the device feels full and rich with sound rather than Lenovo’s offering that feels somewhat hollow.

Google’s Home Hub delivers the most quiet audio of the three and lacks the punchy bass offered on its two rivals.

Google Home Hub

The Google Home Hub a 7-inch panel with a resolution of 1024×600 (Image: Google)

Performance

The Google Home Hub and Lenovo Smart Display both run an entirely new operating system that has been designed by the American tech giant for such products.

The Lenovo Smart Display runs “Android Things” while the Home Hub’s software is actually based on a modified version of Google Cast.

Although this sounds like a big difference, the two devices ultimately run software that looks exactly the same.

The operating system is incredibly easy to navigate and boasts Google’s signature font and emphasis on the colour white.

When both devices are left idle they make for the perfect virtual picture frame and pair easily with Google Photos, meaning all your latest memories can be viewed in ambient mode.

A swipe up on the device deploys the main home screen of the operating system that displays important information such as the latest weather forecast and any events scheduled in Google Calendar.

Lenovo Smart Display

The bamboo back panel is only available on the 10-inch version of the product and avoids being tacky (Image: Lenovo)

Both hardware’s array of functionality can be accessed by simply swiping right while gesturing left acts as the back button for the operating system.

The most impressive thing about the software is its ability to display contextual information based on previous activity; this means if you regularly use either piece of hardware for music streaming it will place that functionality front and centre.

One of the most unique abilities of both products is the ability to not only deliver new and exciting food recipes, but to also provide a step-by-step cooking guide for dishes.

Moreover, because the Google Assistant is embedded as the fundamental functional backbone for the Home Hub and Smart Display, it means you can navigate the entirety of the operating system with voice commands.

Ultimately this means you do not have to worry about touching either device if you are cooking for instance and your hands are not appropriately prepared for a touchscreen.

Overall the software offered on both the Google Home Hub and Lenovo Smart display is aesthetically pleasing and incredibly functional.

Amazon Echo Show

Amazon Echo Show certainly looks like the most contemporary device of the three (Image: Amazon)

Meanwhile, the Amazon Echo Show runs the firm’s Fire OS fork of Android that offers a more varied design for users.

Overall Amazon’s modified Android operating system regularly oozes more colour than the consistently white appearance of the Google Home Hub and the Lenovo Smart Display.

Just like its two smart display rivals, the Echo Show offers close integration with other smart home products such as lights and thermostats, but uses its Alexa virtual assistant to perform such functionality.

Both Alexa and the Google Assistant are incredibly responsive, but the latter certainly has a slight advantage thanks to Google’s search heritage.

All three devices are incredibly capable of recognising user voices and responding accordingly.

Amazon’s offering excels thanks to its close integration with other services from the retail giant.

Google Home Hub

The Google Home Hub comes in a single version that costs £139 (Image: Google)

The Echo Show is capable of streaming Prime Video content and can air tracks from Amazon Music, meaning anyone that is already invested in the company’s ecosystem will get the most out of the product.

However, the Google Home Hub and Lenovo Smart Display have the advantage of being closely tied to the American tech giant’s other software offerings.

That means streaming a YouTube video is incredibly easy and it also allows for other handy benefits such as Chromecast and Google Photos integration.

Lenovo Smart Display

The Lenovo Smart display comes equipped with a 5-megapixel front-facing camera (Image: Lenovo)

Price

The Lenovo Smart Display comes in both 8-inch and 10-inch varieties that cost £179.99 and £229.99 respectively.

However, the firm is currently discounting the former on its website, meaning it can now be obtained for £159.99.

The Google Home Hub comes in a single version that costs £139 and is available in chalk, charcoal, aqua and sand finishes.

And finally the Amazon Echo show has a price tag of £219.99 and comes in black and white colours.

Amazon Echo Show

Amazon Echo Show runs the firm’s Fire OS fork of Android (Image: Amazon)

Verdict

The Amazon Echo show is an incredibly tantalising premise for those that are already invested in the firm’s ecosystem.

Having instant access to a vast array of music and video content if you are already a Prime members means Amazon fans should take advantage of the Echo Show’s offering.

Similarly, both the Google Home Hub and Lenovo Smart Display are great options for those that are fans of Google’s services and take advantage of them regularly.

Because both of Lenovo’s offerings outclass Google’s hardware by flaunting bigger displays, better audio fidelity and in our opinion a more premium design, it is certainly the product to go for.

Choosing between the Amazon Echo Show and Lenovo Smart Display is incredibly difficult, part in parcel because each are appealing to different audiences.

For those that are not yet committed to either firm’s array of other services, the Amazon Echo only edges out the Smart Display if customers are also willing to pay either the yearly £79 or monthly £7.99 for Prime.

Anyone not willing to spare the added expense should pick up the Lenovo Smart Display and will certainly not be disappointed with its gorgeous screen, punchy audio and quality build.

Swiftype Reports

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