Google homescreen redesign rolling out to Lenovo Smart Displays

With the Nest Hub Max in May, Google introduced a new homescreen for Smart Displays. Already available on the Nest Hub, this revamped — and somewhat controversial — redesign is now rolling out to Lenovo Smart Displays.

The Ambient Mode — which allows for fullscreen clocks or Photo galleries — stays the same. When users tap the screen, the current background is blurred while a Google News “Top stories” card slides in from the right. This is the default card if media is not playing or you have no upcoming events.

Time and day/date appears in the bottom-left corner, while the weather includes the temperature, condition, and high/low. Previously, the entire left half was dedicated to showing a larger temperature readout and three-day forecast. Most Nest Hub users have complained about the lack of a forecast, though the weather section can still be tapped to launch the fullscreen experience.

While the blurred wallpaper is meant to personalize your Smart Display, clocks get the same treatment. This is not a particular elegant solution, with the background switching to solid colors as you scroll through cards.

This UI makes most sense for future devices like the Nest Hub Max where Face Match will recognize users and then slide out personalized reminders and Duo messages on the homescreen. For existing devices, it’s somewhat of an eyesore depending on the configuration and shows less information at a glance.

According to Lenovo owners this week, the redesigned Smart Display homescreen is rolling out with the R12 OTA for the 8- and 10-inch models.

lenovo smart display versus google home hub

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Avatar for Abner Li Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: