Lenovo to buy RIM? That's a little hard to swallow.

Subject: General Tech | January 25, 2013 - 01:16 PM |
Tagged: RIM, Lenovo, blackberry, purchase, rumour

We are looking at all opportunities -- RIM and many others” is the actual quote from Chief Financial Officer Wong Wai Ming that spurred the speculation that Lenovo is going to buy RIM.  These rumours have spread to the point that Canadian Finance Minister Jim Flaherty has gone on record to say that any such proposal would be scrutinized by the government before it could go through.  If you look over the past five years of the Harper government and how they have treated foreign acquisition of large Canadian companies you will notice a pattern, the sale of MacDonald Dettwiler & Associates Ltd. to an American based company was blocked, sale of Potash Corp to the Australians was blocked and while Nexen was purchased by a Chinese mining firm, the current Canadian government is on record as saying no more state companies will be allowed to buy oil sands firms.

It is not just the regulatory hurdles that make this sale seem unlikely, at least in the terms pundits are currently bandying about.  Lenovo did base their current success on purchasing IBM's hardware line but it was at a time when IBM chose to move out of the hardware business; IBM did not have to sell off that successful business but instead saw an opportunity in doing so.  RIM on the other hand is in trouble and if they try to flog their hardware business off to the highest bidder they are not going to meet with the success that IBM did.  In fact, even without seeing the 10 new phones that will be arriving in the near future, it is not a stretch to theorize that they will not have the speed and attractiveness of Samsung or HTCs current or upcoming models. 

What is sexy about RIM is behind the scenes, their architecture (at least now that they've moved away from the single point of failure model) and the security features that Blackberrys on a proper BES have.  Native ActiveSync support is nice as BYOD becomes more common in the corporate world but those devices lack the security assurances that a Blackberry has, which is what makes it attractive to Governments and Security Agencies across the world in addition to corporate users.  It is also the only part of the company that IBM found interesting when the last set of RIM rumours circulated.  It is possible that the stories such as you can see at The Register have some merit, it would seem far more likely that Lenovo would be considering a purchase similar to their IBM purchase, sell and support the hardware but not the software side.

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"Lenovo CFO Wong Wai Ming says the company is actively pursuing ways to improve its position in the mobile device market, spurring speculation that the Chinese firm may be planning to cozy up with Research in Motion – or even swallow it whole."

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Source: The Register

Rumor: Lenovo Will Produce Convertible Tablets Running Android

Subject: General Tech | January 15, 2013 - 12:12 PM |
Tagged: Lenovo, convertible tablet, Android

Lenovo officially launched its IdeaPad Yoga 11S convertible tablet at CES, but it seems that Windows 8 is not the only OS Lenovo wants to support. According to tech news and rumors site Digi Times, Lenovo is planning to launch at least one IdeaPad Yoga tablet running Google’s Android operating system within the first half of 2013.

Lenovo Rumored To Be Producing Android Tablet.jpg

According to Digi Time's sources that are reportedly in the know “Lenovo's planned offerings will target the Android tablet segment, meeting Intel's previous commitment to rolling out Android-based tablets through joint efforts with Lenovo.”

It is an interesting move for Lenovo that should play well assuming they can keep the pricing in check. The sources were not able to confirm whether or not the Android tablets will use ARM or x86 hardware, but the bit of information about Intel and Lenovo seems to suggest it will be Intel powered and use an x86 build of Android.

The new Android tablets would have a useful form factor with the Yoga platform, and if Lenovo can price them right they will make a nice alternative to Lenovo’s own Windows RT tablets as well as make for good competition versus existing Android tablets that do not integrate physical keyboards. I’m interested to see a cheaper Yoga notebook powered by Android matched up against ASUS’ Transformer tablet offerings!

Source: Digitimes

Ring! Ring! Lenovo-phone!

Subject: Mobile | January 9, 2013 - 01:45 PM |
Tagged: Lenovo, Ideaphone K860, ice cream sandwich, android 4.0, Exynos 4412

The Exynos 4412 powered Lenovo Ideaphone K860 sports very nice 720 x 1280 IPS screen which takes up most of the body of the phone thanks to the thin bezel on the phone.  The Inquirer were impressed with the performance of the phone as well as the custom interface Lenovo demonstrated, running Ice Cream Sandwich.  They also felt that the phone felt somewhat more rugged than it's competition the Samsung Galaxy Note 2, check out the full preview here.

Inq_lenovo-k860-540x334.JPG

"We were shocked to discover the size of the phone too, as it didn't feel as big as 5in when held in the hand. That's not to say it's a tiny phone, as with dimensions of 143.5 x7 4.4 x 9.6mm it won't squeeze easily into your skinny jean pocket, However, Lenovo designed the phone with a narrow bezel around the screen, which means it doesn't waste valuable space with white plastic."

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Source: The Inquirer

CES 2013: Lenovo Shows Off Clover Trail+ Powered K900 Smartphone

Subject: Mobile | January 9, 2013 - 04:07 AM |
Tagged: CES, smartphone, Lenovo, k900, Intel, clover trail, Android, ces 2013

Lenovo has shown off a new Android smartphone at CES. However, in an interesting twist the new Lenovo K900 is powered by an Intel Atom processor rather than an ARM SoC. The K900 smartphone is constructed of a stainless steel alloy and poly-carbonate material. Lenovo has managed to pack all the hardware in a 6.9mm thin chassis that weights 162 grams. It will come in one of four colors, including gold, silver, and grey in a brushed aluminum pattern and one that has a diamond-plate design on the back cover.

The K900 features a 5.5” IPS touchscreen display protected by Gorilla Glass 2 and with a resolution of 1920x1080. The chassis also hosts a front-facing webcam with an 88-degree field of view and a rear 13MP (F1.8) camera with a dual LED flash.

Lenovo K900_Clover Trail(plus).jpg

The outside is neat, but it is the internal specifications where the Lenovo K900 gets interesting. The smartphone is powered by an Intel Clover Trail+ SoC. While Intel is not yet providing details on the new processor, Engadget speculates that the SoC will be the Intel Atom Z2580, which is a dual core Clover Trail successor running at up to 2GHz. The K900 will also include 2GB of RAM and between 16GB and 64GB of internal storage (plus a microSD card slot). The phone will be running Android along with Lenovo’s Le Phone skin on top (though it can reportedly be disabled).

All in all it looks like a really slick smartphone from the specifications list. Battery life and performance are still unknown, but I’m excited to see benchmarks of this once it is released. Unfortunately, it is not headed to the United States at this time. Instead, the Lenovo K900 will be available in China starting in April of this year. Pricing should be available closer to the product’s release date. Engadget has the full press release along with hands on videos with the hardware.

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Source: Engadget

CES 2013 Podcast Day 1 - Everything Lenovo, NVIDIA Tegra 4 and Shield

Subject: General Tech | January 7, 2013 - 04:33 AM |
Tagged: video, Thinkpad, tegra 4, shield, podcast, nvidia, Lenovo, ideacentre, ces 2013, CES

CES 2013 Podcast Day 1 - 01/06/2013

It's time for podcast fun at CES!  Join us as we talk about the first day of the show including a lot of announcements from Lenovo, the NVIDIA Tegra 4 and Shield products and more!

You can subscribe to us through iTunes and you can still access it directly through the RSS page HERE.

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Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Josh Walrath, Allyn Malventano and Ken Addison

Program length: 45:50

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Coverage of CES 2013 is brought to you by AMD!

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CES 2013: Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11S Brings Intel Core i5 to 11-in Form Factor

Subject: Mobile | January 6, 2013 - 07:31 PM |
Tagged: yoga 11s, yoga 11, yoga, Lenovo, ideapad yoga, Ideapad, ces 2013, CES

The Lenovo Yoga laptops were actually announced at last year's CES and we have had one in house for a couple of months as well, doing a quick look type video of it back in October.  The Yoga notebooks are convertible Ultrabooks with a 360 degree hinge allowing you to wrap the display behind the keyboard and put the machine into a tablet form factor.  The first one we saw was powered by the Intel Core i5 processor but was in a 13-in design. 

There has been an 11-in version of the Yoga, but it was powered by NVIDIA's Tegra 3 processor and runs Windows RT.  The Yoga 11S being announced today runs the full version of Windows 8 and includes Intel ULV Ivy Bridge Core i5 series processors, integrated Intel HD 4000 graphics and can be configured with up to 8GB of DDR3 memory and a 256GB SSD.

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An 11.6-in 1366x768 IPS display with 10 point touch capability is at the heart of the convertible notebook that is rated at 6 hours of battery life with a 3.08 lbs fighting weight. 

The Yoga's biggest feature is the ability to convert into four different "modes" of usage: laptop, tablet, stand and tent.  You can see all of them demonstrated on our Yoga 13 preview video above and the same forms exist on the new Yoga 11S. 

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The Yoga 11S will also be available in "Clementine"

The Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11S will be available in mid-February and will start at $799.

Check out the full press release after the break!

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CES 2013: Lenovo ThinkPad Helix Convertible Ultrabook With "Rip and Flip" Design

Subject: Mobile | January 6, 2013 - 07:21 PM |
Tagged: ultrabook, Thinkpad, tablet, Lenovo, helix, convertible tablet, ces 2013, CES

The ThinkPad line from Lenovo just got a bit more interesting with the announcement of the Helix, a new touch-enabled convertible tablet form factor that includes a new design labeled as "rip and flip." 

Thinkpad prince with keyboard_tour_11.jpg

Hardware specifications on the Helix are pretty impressive given the small form factor and include Ivy Bridge-based Core i7 processors, up to 8GB of memory and a 256GB SSD, two USB 3.0 ports, RJ45 port, mini-DisplayPort and even mini-HDMI.  The machine will also have optional LTE radios to go along with the 802.11n WiFi and even NFC support. 

The display panel is an IPS 11.6-in 1080p rated at 400 nits - that is very high brightness for a Lenovo machine in my experience.  The screen is rated for 10 point touch capability as well in case you need BOTH HANDS for your project.

Thinkpad prince with keyboard_tour_06.jpg

Also new is the Lenovo glass ClickPad which I am very eager to get my hands and try.  That is the one area where MacBooks have continued to dominate in terms of notebook design and if Lenovo's ThinkPads can match or improve then we might have a winner on our hands. 

The machine will weigh in at 3.68 lbs for the tablet and dock, 1.84 lbs for the tablet on its own, for great portability.  Battery life claims are at 5 hours on the tablet alone and 10 hours with the tablet and base combination, but as with all battery life specifications plan on cutting that to 50-60% for real-world usage scenarios. 

Thinkpad prince with keyboard_tour_13.jpg

The new form factor of the ThinkPad Helix is being branded as "rip and flip" due to the tablets ability to be pulled off the keyboard / trackpad dock easily with a single release point.  Folding it down into a standard clamshell design results in your standrad laptop configuration, but with only a 20mm z-height.

Lenovo will start shipping the ThinkPad Helix in mid-February with a starting price of $1,499. 

Keep checking our CES 2013 coverage at http://pcper.com/ces and continue on after the break for the full press release!

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Lenovo Makes a Play for the All-In-One Crowd with the IdeaCentre A730

Subject: Systems | January 6, 2013 - 06:00 PM |
Tagged: system, Lenovo, ideacenter, ces 2013, CES, A730

Lenovo has announced their new IdeaCentre A730, "the world's slimming 27-inch multi-touch all-in-one".  Mesuring less than an inch thick, the A730 can support up to 10 touch points and is optimized for Windows 8.

01_A730_01.jpg

Key Features include:

  • 27-inch multi-touch frameless display measuring just 24.5 mm (0.9 inches) thick
  • 10 finger multi-touch technology, optimized for Windows 8
  • Widely adjustable screen angle for comfortable use
  • Large 27” Quad or Full HD display
  • Up to 3rd Gen Intel® Core™ i7 processor
  • Up to NVIDIA® GeForce® GT 745M 2GB graphics
  • Up to 1TB HDD storage or 1TB SSHD storage with 8GB SSD cache

02_A730_02.jpg

A widely adjustable, frameless display allows the screen to be set into almost any position and folded back for added comfort.

03_A730_03.jpg

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Source: Lenovo

CES 2013: Lenovo OneLink Connection Combines HDMI, Audio, Power, Ethernet and more!

Subject: General Tech, Mobile | January 6, 2013 - 06:00 PM |
Tagged: thunderbolt, onelink, Lenovo, ces 2013, CES

An interesting technology from Lenovo is making its debut at CES 2013 as a side-story to an otherwise kind of bland notebook, the ThinkPad Edge E431 and E531.  The notebook itself is based around an Ivy Bridge platform, 14-in or 15-in 1600x900 touch screen, optional discrete graphics and standard storage but what makes it more interesting is that it is the first machine to support Lenovo OneLink.

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Lenovo OneLink is a single connection that promises to "connect and deliver power to everything" and if successful, can reduce cable clutter and simplify connections for consumers and business users that want a laptop as their primary machine with a dockable workstation option for when you are at home or the office.  The capability for OneLink to not only act as the conduit for video, audio, networking, storage and more but also charge your laptop and power those other accessories would be impressive and surpasses Thunderbolt in many ways.  We don't yet know the actual data rate of OneLink so TB may still have an advantage there.

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Lenovo was also showing the first accessory for OneLink, a dock that features a NAS controller, 4 USB ports, Ethernet, native VGA, HDMI and audio.  In a relatively small package you are able to expand the ThinkPad Edge E431/E531 to the connectivity and capability of a full desktop with external storage and added displays.  Lenovo claims the HDMI connection will be completely lag free and support 1080p resolutions. 

Lots of questions remain including when other Lenovo machines will adopt this connection and why Lenovo decided to shun Thunderbolt that would allow them not only support other accessories but sell its accessories (like this dock) to non-Lenovo customers. 

Hopefully we'll get some more details this week!

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Lenovo ThinkVision LT1423p Touch Mobile Monitor

Subject: General Tech, Displays, Mobile | January 6, 2013 - 06:00 PM |
Tagged: windows 8, thinkvision, mobile, LT1423p, Lenovo, CES

Not one to be left out of the fray, Lenovo latest mobile announcement for CES comes in the form of a 13.3 inch, Windows 8 touch optimized mobile monitor.

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Courtesy of Lenovo

The ThinkVision LT1423p Mobile Monitor is being markets as a touch enabled secondary screen to be used by on-the-go professionals wanting the added productivity that a touch screen provides for the Windows 8 experience. The screen is an AH-IPS LED-based display with an edge to edge Gorilla Glass coating for added strength and durability. The monitor also support both wired and wireless forms of connectivity for added versatility.

KeyFeatures
Courtesy of Lenovo

  • Windows 8 touch optimized wired mobile monitor
  • 10 point multi-touch Gorilla Glass screen with anti-reflection and anti-fingerprint surfaces
  • One USB3.0 interface for its signal and power or optional WiFi wireless connectivity for ultra-mobility
  • Digitizer pen with 256 pressure, 2540lpi resolution, and a 133pps data rate
  • 4-directions wide viewing angle supported by latest 13.3 inch AH-IPS LED viewing panel
  • Ultra slim design ranging from 0.3 inch at its thinnest point to 0.6 inch at its thickest

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Courtesy of Lenovo

The touch screen monitor is only 1/2 an inch thick, weighing a mere 1.6 lbs. Not only is this sized to fit in the same bag as your ultrabook or laptop, but will not add much weight to that shoulder bag either.

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Courtesy of Lenovo

In addition to its 10 point multi-touch support, the ThinkVision LT1423p supports use of an stylus-type touch pen device for finer touch control.

Technical Specifications (provided by Lenovo)

Screen Size

13.3 inches

Panel Type

AH-IPS, LED

Display/Resolution

1600*900, HD+

Brightness

300nit

Contrast Ratio

500 : 1

DCR

10M:1

Interface

1 USB3.0

Multi-touch

10 point multi-touch

Touch Pen

Digitizer with 256 pressure transducers

Cover / Stand

Cover with stand to support landscape and portrait use

Weight

Starting at 1.6 pounds (730g)

Thickness

0.28 inches thin (7.1 mm thin)

Price

Starting at USD$349

Coverage of CES 2013 is brought to you by AMD!

PC Perspective's CES 2013 coverage is sponsored by AMD.

Follow all of our coverage of the show at http://pcper.com/ces!