Lenovo’s second Alexa-powered speaker connects to its Tab 4 devices


At this previous CES, Lenovo introduced its $130 Smart Assistant speaker with Amazon’s Alexa inside. While that machine remains to be listed as “coming soon” on Lenovo’s web site, the corporate is not placing any of its good dwelling ambitions on maintain. Lenovo’s new Home Assistant Pack seems to be a pared-down model of the Smart Assistant—one which’s constructed to connect with any Tab four pill.

The Home Assistant additionally has the Alexa voice assistant inside, but it surely’s not as highly effective of a speaker because the Smart Assistant. It has a three-watt speaker and two built-in mics with far-field detection designed to select up your voice from three meters away. The Smart Assistant as an alternative has a five-watt tweet, a 10-watt subwoofer, and eight built-in mics with far-field detection.

Weighing 300 grams, the Home Assistant is mainly an adjunct model of the Smart Speaker that you may tote from room to room. By itself, it is akin to Amazon’s Echo Dot—however paired with a Tab four pill, it turns into much like an Echo Show. Sliding one among Lenovo’s tablets into the Home Assistant’s dock will routinely convey up the “Home Assistant interface,” in which you’ll be able to ask Alexa to play music, examine your calendar, offer you climate updates, and extra. The pill will present “display cards” for visible data along with the Home Assistant offering voice solutions through Alexa.

While you need to use all the pill’s options whereas linked to the Home Assistant, Lenovo likens the pair extra to an Amazon Echo with show playing cards slightly than the Echo Show. Amazon’s $230 Echo Show is an Alexa-powered speaker with a touchscreen that offers you all of the common options of Alexa, together with video and voice calling capabilities, safety digital camera feed viewing with suitable IoT units, and extra. It looks as if an odd product to come back out, contemplating the good speaker house is so crowded and since it seems we’re nonetheless ready for the Smart Assistant speaker to ship. However, it may very well be a very good accent for anybody who already has a Tab four pill.

In addition to a wise dwelling accent, Lenovo is without doubt one of the many OEMs releasing a Windows Mixed Reality headset forward of the annual IFA conference. Dubbed the Lenovo Explorer, this mixed-reality headset is very like these we have seen Dell and Asus debut not too long ago: it consists of a flip-up visor on a headscarf that connects to a suitable PC with one Y-cable to the USB 2.zero port and HDMI output. There aren’t any exterior sensors to hook up, and the machine helps inside-out monitoring together with non-compulsory movement controllers. These additionally look similar to Microsoft’s personal mixed-reality controllers, and it appears Dell, Lenovo, and different producers have all taken the identical design method to those twin handheld units. You do not want the controllers to make use of the headset, and you’ll even use an Xbox controller if that feels extra pure to you whereas taking part in VR video games.

The mixed-reality house you may need to work with is definitely barely bigger than that of Dell’s introduced Visor headset. Lenovo’s Explorer will acknowledge a Three.5-by-Three.5-meter space (or 11.5-by-11.5 ft). Its shows are much like the Dell Visor: 1440 x 1440 panels for every eye. It’s suitable with Lenovo laptops and desktops, in addition to every other PCs which have the specs required by Microsoft’s Windows Mixed Reality platform. Lenovo additionally has its “Entertainment Hub” the place greater than 100 different “upscaled” VR video games shall be obtainable.

We loved Lenovo’s high-end Yoga 910 convertible, and the corporate additionally introduced the subsequent machine on this household: the Yoga 920. It’s the most recent Surface competitor to come back out, enhancing on the 910 in some methods whereas incorporating some inside upgrades. The 920’s design seems to be practically equivalent to that of the 910, but it surely now measures 13.9mm thick and weighs Three.02 kilos. That makes it ever so barely lighter and thinner than the 910, however in any other case it has a variety of the identical exterior options: a 13.9-inch 4K IPS touchscreen that is suitable with the non-compulsory Active Pen, that signature Lenovo watchband hinge that enables it to lie flat when opened at a 180-degree angle, and a Windows Hello-ready fingerprint sensor.

Two points we had with the Yoga 910 was the dearth of Thunderbolt Three ports and the extra-large chin bezel beneath the show. Lenovo seems to have fastened a type of two issues: the 920 has two Thunderbolt Three ports that help knowledge switch and charging, which is a good improve from the one USB Type-C port on the 910. The 920’s backside bezel remains to be its largest, however its webcam has been moved to the tiny prime bezel. We want this placement for video chatting since you will not get these unattractive up-the-nose pictures such as you would with a bottom-placed webcam. The solely time this placement will not come in useful is when the show is turned upside-down whereas in tent mode.

In addition to being suitable with the Explorer headset, the Yoga 920 could have Intel’s eightth-generation quad-core CPUs, built-in Intel HD graphics, as much as 16GB DDR4 RAM, as much as 1TB PCIe SSD storage, a 70Whr battery that may final practically 11 hours on the 4K mannequin (or 15.5 hours on the FHD mannequin), and far-field mics to enhance speech recognition. Lenovo highlighted that Cortana on this Windows convertible will be capable of detect instructions from as much as 4 meters away. Lenovo is admittedly pushing the significance of voice as a management on any machine—it has grow to be an vital AI characteristic on smartphones already, so it should doubtless grow to be extra vital on PCs sooner or later.

According to Lenovo, the Yoga 920 may even use Cortana to supply contextual reminders because it learns your habits and the place you’re all through the day. Presumably should you allow location companies, Cortana will be capable of remind you to select up groceries should you’re working at a espresso store close to one among your often visited shops. While you might be much less doubtless to make use of a voice assistant on a laptop computer, having that assistant supply recommendations based mostly on the time of day, the place you’re, and different contextual clues could encourage you to make use of it extra.

The new Yoga 920 is accompanied by a brand new Yoga 720: the brand new 12-inch convertible could have an FHD IPS touchscreen, 7th-generation Intel processors, Intel built-in graphics, as much as 8GB DDR4 RAM, as much as 512GB SATA SSD storage, a 36Whr battery that may last as long as eight hours on a single cost, and a Windows Hello fingerprint reader.

Lenovo’s Miix removable household has a brand new member as effectively: the Miix 520 removable is a pill/keyboard bundle with a slew of non-compulsory, purposeful options. You can decide to get the 520 with LTE service, with the Active Pen 2, and with Lenovo’s WorldView digital camera that may take photographs and allow you to edit them in 3D with the Windows 10 Fall Creators replace. Like the Yoga 920, the Miix 520 has the identical mic system that is constructed to listen to Cortana instructions from distant. It’ll even have an FHD IPS touchscreen, eightth-generation Intel CPUs, built-in HD graphics, 8GB of RAM, 256GB PCIe SSD storage, and a 39Whr battery for 7.5 hours of battery life.

The Miix 520 will begin at $999. The Yoga 720 will begin at $649, whereas the Yoga 920 will begin at $1,329. Lenovo’s Home Assistant Pack prices $69, and the Explorer mixed-reality headset will value $349 alone or $449 when bundled with two movement controllers. All of Lenovo’s new merchandise shall be obtainable beginning in October.

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