The Best Smart Displays for 2020
The smart home team at Digital Trends has spent more than 2,200 hours testing smart speakers, smart displays, and smart home hubs. Our pick for the best smart display is the Google Nest Hub Max, which has a well-designed interface, built-in features that enhance the user experience, and a 10-inch HD display screen.
If the Nest Hub Max isn 8217;t what you 8217;re looking for, we also included our picks for the best Amazon Echo smart display, the smart display with the best design, the best smart display for your bedroom, the best budget smart display, the smart display for video calls, and the best smart display that can replace your alarm clock.
Why we picked the Google Nest Hub Max:
Sure, the Nest Hub Max has a larger screen than the original Nest Hub, but it also offers a lot more features and functionality in addition to its brilliant HD screen. It has a 6.5-inch megapixel camera with auto-framing, so you can make video calls, and the camera will even follow you as you move around the room.
Face match technology allows for a more personalized experience. When the Hub recognizes your face, it can show you content specific to you (video messages, reminders, and upcoming calendar events, etc.). Up to six users can save a face match profile. The Nest Hub Max also allows for quick gesture control, so you can use hand gestures to control certain functions (like pausing or playing a music track).
Who 8217;s it for: Those who want a feature-rich display that serves as multiple functions. The Nest Hub Max is a versatile device that does it all 8230; well almost. It doesn 8217;t have a built-in Zigbee Hub, so if that 8217;s important to you, you might want to consider a different option like the Echo Show 2.
Like all Echo devices, the Show 2 uses Amazon 8217;s Alexa to control smart devices, ask questions, catch up on the news, and make video calls. Alexa has excellent smart home compatibility with many different devices and easily connects with Amazon Music and Prime Video (although Hulu and a variety of additional music services are also available). The device has a built-in Zigbee smart home hub as well.
Who 8217;s it for: People who love Alexa and the idea of watching videos, shows, news, and sports on their smart display. It can act as an excellent second TV in a den, kitchen, or other room of the house, with connections to both Prime Video and Hulu, among other video options. The 10.1-inch display is ideal for catching details, while the audio saw massive improvement for this generation. However, if you don 8217;t really like this 8220;second TV 8221; idea, another, less expensive option may be the better choice.
It 8217;s a great display for looking up recipes in the kitchen or checking your calendar with a voice command. It 8217;s the best looking of the bunch with a bamboo backing, and you can buy the device with either a 7-inch, 8-inch, or 10-inch screen.
Who 8217;s it for: Those who use Google Assistant and want flexibility. Google Assistant has more video options than Alexa due to easy YouTube access, as well as plenty of scheduling, music (with strong audio), interactive searching, and video call options. It 8217;s also one of the few displays that gives you two choices of display size, which is a great way to customize based on what you want.
Why we picked the Amazon Echo Show 8:
There 8217;s also a camera and a microphone. These are great for calling friends and family or connecting to other Echo Shows in your house. However, because this device is designed to be bedroom friendly, Amazon also made sure you can turn these features off for privacy if you want to. A switch will electronically shut down the camera and microphones, and you can take an extra step of shuttering the camera for more protection if you want.
Who 8217;s it for: People who want a capable smart display for the bedroom with the ability to link to other cams in the house 8212; but always want guarantees about their privacy when using such devices.
Why we picked the Echo Show 5:
The Echo Show 5 is pretty small, with only a 5.5-inch screen. The Show 5 does, however, have a lot to offer in a tiny package. You can perform the basic functions you can perform with most smart displays 8212; make video calls, control your smart home devices, watch videos, and ask the assistant questions. But, the Show 5 is a budget display, so it only has a 1-megapixel camera and a single 4-watt speaker. It also lacks the built-in Zigbee Hub that you 8217;d get with the Echo Show 2.
Who 8217;s it for: This device is ideal for those who want a voice-assistant-powered device with a display screen, but don 8217;t want to spend too much cash. It 8217;s the perfect starter smart display.
Why we picked the Facebook Portal (2019):
The Facebook Portal is great for video calls 8212; and it works easily through Messenger and WhatsApp too, adding some versatility to a Facebook-dominated display. The first versions of Portal were 8230;well, creepy, but this newer 10-inch model replaces the old design with a much more friendly portrait-like display that works great for showing off your Facebook or Instagram photos when you aren 8217;t making a video call.
The smart call options, fortunately, are still present, include a camera that can pan and zoom as it follows you around the room. Alexa 8217;s voice command technology allows you to search the internet or start a video call with a simple command. Other smart display features are also here, including the ability to play music or watch online videos, but again everything is highly Facebook focused. That means your investment in Facebook connections really pays off, but having Facebook so involved in your communication could make some people nervous.
Who 8217;s it for: People who use the Facebook family of apps and want an easy way to video call their family and friends.
Why we picked the Lenovo Smart Clock:
Lenovo 8217;s latest smart display is specifically designed to operate as an alarm clock. The 4-inch touchscreen comes loaded with many different customizable clock faces 8212; and, with the power of Google Assistant, it can also search the web and play videos. Access to Google Assistant 8217;s capabilities also means you can control other smart devices and set up morning routines for news, coffee, and much more. There 8217;s even a USB port so you can charge your smartphone while you sleep.
While nice, these features are also backed up by a very affordable price, making this a great choice for someone who wants a seriously smart upgrade for their alarm clock but isn 8217;t ready to bring a smart display into other parts of the house quite yet.
Who 8217;s it for: Google assistant fans who want a touchscreen alarm clock that can do it all.
Although tablets and smart displays have some similarities 8212; they both have a display screen, they both play music, and they often both have an assistant (Siri, Google Assistant, Cortana, etc.) 8212; the two devices have different primary functions.
A tablet is a portable computing device that 8217;s primary functions are internet searches, social media, app games, email, etc. A smart display on the other hand typically stays stationary, and its primary functions are to control smart home devices, provide answers to questions, and to serve as a voice assistant.
Most modern smart home products operate without the need for a hub, so you can control most smart devices with just your smart display (as long as they’re compatible). However, having a smart home hub can make your smart home more efficient.
Sometimes. Some smart home products require a bridge to connect with your smart display. Typically, the product will clearly state that a bridge is required. This is not very common today, but you can still find security systems and other setups that may require a bridge or additional hub device to work.
In a nutshell, a smart home hub like a Zigbee Hub helps your smart home devices work better in tandem. Most smart devices and smart speakers like the Echo Dot have evolved to the point where you can control all of your devices without a hub, and the companion app (like the Alexa app) serves as a central point where you can manage your devices and even set routines.
However, a hub allows for a cleaner communication path, which can make things easier on your network. Sometimes, a hub can also allow for offline control of your smart lights and switches if you have compatible devices.
This depends on your preferences. Look for a smart display that shines in the areas that are most important to you. For instance, if privacy and affordability are top priorities for you, look for a device like the Nest Hub or the Echo Show 5. But, if you want a device with a large display screen and good sound quality, look at more expensive models like the Google Nest Hub Max or the Echo Show 2.标签：