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October 10, 2018

Google Home Hub vs Lenovo Smart Display: Which should you buy?

by John_A

We’re a virtual company made up of tech experts from across the globe. All of our homes are Connected Homes, and we use our combined experience to make the best recommendations for your needs.

Google Home Hub

Bedside Companion


$149 at Best Buy


  • Compact design
  • Crisp display


  • Rear-firing speakers limit where you can place this hub

With it’s super simple and compact design, Google made it clear this is the smart display you get when space is an issue. You can put this anywhere and get the best of Google Assistant right where you are.

Lenovo Smart Display

Kitchen Powerhouse


$249 at Best Buy


  • Huge, beautiful display
  • Front-firing speaker puts you in the music
  • Security slider for camera


  • Design makes it very wide
  • A little pricey

Lenovo made a simple display that sounds great and does everything while looking great, but it’s not a design that works in every room of the house. In the kitchen, however, it’s fantastic.

Google makes the software powering both of these experiences, but the way the hardware is designed and the price tag means these displays are for very different kinds of users.

The smartest display

You can put a Lenovo Smart Display in the kitchen and get a great experience with heaps of features, but Google’s Home Hub was clearly designed to live in more places. It’s compact enough to be a bedside clock of sorts, or to tuck away on a shelf in the laundry room. These design decisions aren’t huge when it comes to the overall experience, unless the amount of space you have really matters.

Display 8-inch/10-inch 7-inch
Speakers 10w + 2 passive tweeters “Multi-room” audio
Microphone 2×2 Dual mic array 2 mic array
Wireless 2×2 802.11ac MIMO 802.11ac
Bluetooth Bluetooth 4.2 Bluetooth 5
Camera 720p
Google Cast
Google Duo
Price $199/$249 $149

Google’s Home Hub comes in at $100 less than the 10-inch Lenovo Smart Display, but it’s clear you lose a lot more than three inches of display with that price drop. Instead of using a privacy shutter on the camera like Lenovo did, Google chose to release a smart display capable of receiving video chats as a core feature with no camera to send back video. Google’s microphone array and WiFi array in the Home Hub also appear to be less capable than Lenovo’s offering, and while the speakers are certainly comparable the design of the Home Hub places the audio away from you by design. This doesn’t work well in every room, especially places like the kitchen where the audio is competing with everything else making noise.

Still, that price tag is difficult to argue with. At $149 you get an extremely capable visual companion to Google Assistant, including the ability to stream video not only from YouTube but also dozens of other video streaming apps through Google Cast. That makes it possible to basically have a TV in places you wouldn’t ordinarily put one, and the compact design makes it very easy to put in places you simply can’t fit a Lenovo Smart Display.

Lenovo Smart Display

Feature Packed


$249 at Best Buy

This is the Google Assistant display you get when you want the best of every feature.

With it’s killer speakers, huge display, and clever design this is one of the coolest things Lenovo has ever made. And if you’ve got the room for it in your home, it’s going to do a great job every time.

Google Home Hub

Assistant everywhere


An excellent and inexpensive way to make Google Home a big part of your day to day life.

$149 at Best Buy

It’s not quite as big or featureful as some of the more expensive smart displays, but it looks incredible in each of its four available colors and will do a great job delivering Google Assistant to every room in your home.

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