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smart display


[Update: Duo audio calls too] Google Home Hub supports Duo calls, but the recipient will only see your profile pic

When the Google Home Hub leaks first started, everyone was miffed by the absence of a front-facing camera for Duo calls. Later, with the device's official announcement, those leaks were proven to be true, and Google explained that it chose to skip the cam for privacy reasons (though we all know the decision was more likely a matter of competitive pricing.) However, what we didn't know was that the Home Hub would indeed support Duo calls, even without the camera.

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Grab the Lenovo 8" Smart Display for $180 at Best Buy ($20 off)

Move along, smart speakers - smart displays are the next hot item every home must have. If you're in the Google Assistant camp, you can benefit from a small deal on the Lenovo Smart Display with an 8" screen. While it usually retails for $199.99, you can now get it for $179.99 at Best Buy.

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Google skips Android Things OS for the Home Hub, uses Chromecast-based software instead

All previous 'smart displays' with Google Assistant are nearly identical under the hood. They all run Android Things OS (a specialized version of Android for IoT devices) on top of a standardized hardware platform (like those from MediaTek and Qualcomm). Most people assumed that Google's own smart display, the recently-announced Home Hub, would use the same software and hardware. However, the Home Hub is something entirely different.

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Google Home Hub is official, costs just $149

As with everything in today's announcement, the Home Hub has been leaked more than once in recent weeks. Google's own-branded Assistant Smart Display, as expected, resembles a tablet glued onto a fabric speaker base, and it's sadly not removable so it can't be used as a standalone tablet.

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[Deal Alert] Grab a JBL Link View smart display for $200 ($50 off)

Assistant smart displays are a fairly new product, but we're already starting to see discounts on some. JBL is knocking $50 off its offering, the Link View, meaning that you only need to fork over $199.95 to get your own smart display.

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Facebook-made smart display will reportedly be announced this week

Facebook has been working on something akin to an Echo Show or smart display for a while now. After the Cambridge Analytica scandal, Facebook decided to put the plans on hold. Now it appears the device could launch as soon as this coming week.

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JBL Link View review: Great sound from JBL, but Smart Displays still have a long way to go

Smart displays aren't for everyone. They're not exactly tablets, but they look like ones and are both less and more useful, depending on how you look at them. With far superior sound and always listening mics, they act as a smart speaker for your home; but without real apps or a fully functional browser, you hit some roadblocks while using them and wish they could do just a little bit more.

Over the past few months, every time I've read someone compare Smart Displays to crippled tablets, I've had the same reply: I want one because it would work for me.

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Tip: Hide personal results from your Smart Display if you don't want to spoil surprises or share your content recommendations

Having a Google Assistant Smart Display, such as the LenovoJBL Link View, or LG ThinQ WK9, is very convenient around the house. But if you don't pay attention, you may end up with unwanted privacy concerns because of the mere fact that these displays don't differentiate between people looking at them. They know voices and will only respond to you, but they don't know faces. If there's a personal card on the homescreen, anyone can read it or tap it to see more. Which is how you may end up revealing your surprise party plans to your spouse and your full calendar to boot.

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Tip: You can video call your Smart Display at home from your phone (with both on the same Duo account)

If you have one of the fancy new Assistant Smart Displays, be it the already available Lenovo or the soon-to-be-released JBL Link View, odds are you're going to set up Duo on it and use it for video calls. One neat feature that you may not be aware of, though, is that you can video call your display from your phone, with both set up to use the same Duo account.

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Facebook speech recognition software 'Aloha' revealed, 'Portal' confirmed as name for smart speaker/display

After an unsuccessful first attempt at a digital personal assistant inside its Messenger app, Facebook is giving it another go. This time around, the company is focussing its efforts on speech recognition to create a product called Aloha.

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