Lenovo is making its own Amazon Echo smart speaker

04 January 2017

Lenovo is getting in on the burgeoning world of home automation with its own take on the Amazon Echo smart speaker, the Lenovo Smart Assistant. Much like the Amazon Echo, the Lenovo Smart Assistant is powered by Amazon's Alexa artificial intelligence. You can talk to Alexa almost like a real person, and issue voice commands to conduct web searches, play music, get weather updates, check appointments, and control smart home appliances.

An Alexa API is available to hardware manufacturers, meaning the virtual assistance currently integrates with a large range of hardware and software solutions. By talking to Alexa, you're able to book an Uber, control smart light bulbs from LIFX and Philips, interact with Samsung Smart Appliances, control Belkin WeMo smart switches, and much, much more. A Sonos integration is also on the cards for early this year.

The Lenovo Smart Assistant will be available in two different models; a basic model, and a souped-up edition featuring higher quality Harmon Kardon speakers. An Australian release has yet to be confirmed, but the Lenovo Smart Assistant will be priced at USD$129 when in launches in the United States. The Harmon Kardon edition attracts a slight premium, retailing for USD$179.

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