Lenovo has launched what it claims is the "industry's first large business-focused 23-inch all-in-one desktop," the ThinkCentre M90z. Unlike traditional all-in-one PCs, the M90z includes several IT features designed more for work than play.
"While more and more people are using mobile devices, there are lots of environments where desktop products simply make more sense, and these latest Lenovo products showcase how our new innovations are leading in all-in-one desktops," said Peter Hortensius, senior vice president, Think Product Group, Lenovo. "We believe all-in-one is the future of desktops, so we created the ThinkCentre M90z to deliver everything large enterprise customers need: no compromised performance, customized ergonomic features and a full web conferencing experience."
Part of the IT focus includes a full complement of manageability features for large businesses through Lenovo's ThinkVantage Technologies productivity tools. The M90z supports Intel vPro and Lenovo's Hardware Password Manager for encrypted hard drives, and users are able to remove the back to upgrade the PC, typically a weak point of AIO systems.
One sure sign that Windows Home Server has gone mainstream: You can buy Lenovo’s IdeaCentre D400 at Walmart. The D400 is remarkably similar in looks and features to Acer’s Aspire easyStore, which you’ll also find on the big-box retailer’s website (yes, HP’s MediaSmart Server LX195 is there, too).
Intel’s Atom 230 processor appears to be the CPU of choice among mainstream home-server builders, since Acer, HP, and Lenovo have all tapped the 1.6GHz chip. Lenovo pairs it with 1GB of 800MHz DDR2 memory (the motherboard is capable of addressing 2GB of memory, but there’s only one slot). The D400 ships with either one or two 1TB drives; the machine we reviewed was outfitted with two (thereby enabling Microsoft’s Drive Extender Technology to automatically duplicate shared folders across multiple drives). That leaves two internal, hot-swappable, 3.5-inch bays for future expansion.
You can't escape it folks, 3D is fast becoming the hottest trend in tech, at least from a marketing standpoint. How well all these 3D devices are received remains to be seen, but it looks as though Lenovo will find out fairly soon.
Citing un-named market watchers, DigiTimes feels pretty confident Lenovo is gearing up to release a stereoscopic 3D notebook in the third quarter of 2010, well ahead of the holiday shopping season. As for which 3D technology Lenovo plans to adopt -- Nvidia's GeForce 3D Vision (active shutter glasses) or Winstron's own technology, which uses polarized glasses -- the general consensus is that they'll go with Winstron.
Either way, you'll need to put on a pair of glasses to cash in on the 3D effects, which could end up turning consumers off. There are other 3D technologies on the table, such as the one Sharp is working on that uses a parallax barrier to achieve 3D effects without the need for glasses. There are some downsides to this too, however, the biggest one being the strict viewing angle. In addition, it seems that Sharp and Hitachi (the other company working on a parallax barrier display) have smaller screens set in their sights, such as the one that will be used on Nintendo's upcoming 3DS console.
There are a couple of questions surrounding Palm these days, such as will the company be sold, and if so, who's going to snatch it up? According to a recent Reuters report, Lenovo has replaced HTC as the front runner to scoop the struggling smartphone maker up.
Nokia, Motorola, and Research in Motion (RIM) have all also been mentioned as possible suitors, though if you talk to Palm CEO Jon Rubinsteign (and the Financial Times did), Palm can get by on its own.
"I believe Palm can survive as an independent company. We have a plan that gets us to profitability," Rubinstein said, adding that Palm is working "fast and furious on new handsets." Palm is also considering licensing its webOS to other manufacturers, Rubinstein said.
Naturally, Lenovo had no comment on any potential interest in acquiring Palm.
It wasn't totally unexpected, but it's still jarring to hear Bloomberg reporting that Palm is up for sale. The maker of the WebOS-packing Pre smartphone seemed resurgent just a year ago, but lackluster sales have resulted in poor stock performance and anxious invertors. Palm is said to be working with Goldman Sachs Group to shop around to perspective buyers. Among the possible suitors are Lenovo and HTC.
Just a few weeks ago Palm CEO Jon Rubinstein seemed defiant saying, " I am still confident that our talented team has what it takes to get the job done." But it seems the last few quarter have made their course clear. The speculation is that HTC would be particularly interested in Palm for their large patent portfolio, which could help fend off a suit from Apple. Of course, we wouldn't put it past Apple to buy up Palm to get those patents in Cupertino. Also, Steve Jobs would probably love to fire Rubinstein out of spite.
If nothing else, the acquisition talk has helped Palm's sagging stock price. It's risen over 32% in the past week on news of a sale. As for what this means for the future of WebOS, no one can say. It's possible a buyer could scrap the whole company. Any Pre or Pixi owners out there? If your updates stop flowing, will you move on or stick it out hoping for community support?
Question: What do Acer, Apple, Atheros, Belkin, Broadcom, D-Link, Dell, Gateway, HP, Intel, Lenovo, LG, Mavell, Motorola, Sony, Texas Instruments, Toshiba, UTStarcom all have in common? Answer: They're all being sued by Canadian company Wi-Lan for allegedly infringing on a Bluetooth patent, one that covers a "method for frequency sharing and frequency punchout in frequency hopping communications network." The patent deals almost entirely with Bluetooth equipped PCs and mobile handsets.
"If the company has a valid claim, then a small licensing settlement is appropriate," said Roger Kay, an analyst with Endpoint Technologies.
Wi-Lan, whose portfolio includes over 800 patents that have either been issued or are pending, is seeking unspecified damages and a permanent injunction. This isn't the first time Wi-Lan has gone to court over patent disputes, as the company has a long history of doing so.
The tablet may have just claimed its first victim, though it's a bit early to tell for sure. What we do know is that Lenovo has decided to the delay the launch of its Skylight smartbook by at least three months, which leaves us to speculate on where the market is headed.
Apple sold over 300,000 iPads at launch (including pre-orders), but more importantly, the Cupertino company officially kicked off the era of tablet computing. That doesn't leave smartbooks in a very good position, which quite frankly weren't in a great position to begin with.
Lenovo first announced its Skylight device back in January and said it would ship in April, but that was before anyone outside of Apple had any kind of inkling as to when the iPad would ship. And if the timing's bad now for smartbooks, it's not going to get much better. HP's highly anticipated Slate is just around the corner, and you can bet everyone else will be looking to cash in on this emerging market, just like OEMs did when netbooks started coming into their own.
Lenovo this week quietly re-introduced its IdeaPad S10-3 as the S10-3s. So what's different this time around? Not much, except that Lenovo managed to nip and tuck parts of the chassis, slimming the profile down to 16mm. The S10-3s is also a bit more curvaceous than you might remember.
Underneath the remade exterior sits up to an Intel Atom N470 processor, Intel GMA 3150 integrated graphics, up to 2GB of DDR2-533 memory, choice between 160/250/320GB HDD or 16/32GB SSD, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, three USB ports, a 5-in-1 memory card reader, and a 6-cell battery.
The revamped netbook now comes pre-loaded with DirectShare, an app that syncs files with another PC, as well as Maplife, a geo-location utility for drilling down your location from nearby Wi-Fi hotspots.
Lenovo says you'll be able to buy the S10-3s later this month starting at $379.
All of Lenovo's ThnkPad laptops are 3G-enabled, and the OEM offers the largest selection of 4G-enabled laptops. Starting soon, Lenovo will add support for Sprint 3G and 4G as well, the company announced this week.
"Adding Sprint to our network of supported carriers gives customers even more 3G choice and expanded connectivity points with the fast speeds of Sprint 4G," said Dilip Bhatia, executive director, ThinkPad Product Marketing, Lenovo. "Demand for constant, fast wireless technology has become an expectation, and it's now mission critical for doing business today."
Lenovo says connecting to Sprint 3G or 4G will be a breeze, as the laptops will come with a SIM card already installed. All the user needs to do is fire up Lenovo's Access Connection tool, which Lenovo says is the "only tool available from a PC maker that can manage both 3G and 4G network connections."
Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanqing said on Friday that he sees mobile internet devices making up the vast majority of the company’s profits, possibly as much as 70-80%, in as little as 5 years. Currently, most sales come from the Thinkpad and Ideapad line of notebooks. Lenovo plans to accomplish this changeover by expanding into emerging markets. Devices likely to make up these sales are tablets, smartphones, and smartbooks.
Lenovo is currently the world’s number four PC maker, having purchased IBM’s PC division in 2005. The China based company just released their first touchscreen smartphone, the Ophone O1, in China. Lenovo also plans to release another phone called the LePhone sometime in mid 2010. Most of Lenovo’s energies are being focused on the China market as part of their “protect and attack” strategy. After they feel more secure in China, Lenovo may more into underserved markets like Latin America and Eastern Europe.