Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Mark Hachman is a freelance reporter covering Microsoft for ReadWrite. Previously, he served as the West Coast news editor for PC Magazine/PCMag.com, where he covered components, new technology and the larger Web 2.0 companies such as Facebook and Google. Before that, he worked for eWEEK, TechWeb, and ExtremeTech, which he helped launch. In his spare time, Mark sleeps as much as he can, as his second son was born in July.Lets see how Lenovo make him sad....
On Monday, Lenovo announced the ThinkPad T431s, the first ThinkPad based on its new industrial design, founded upon what the company called "extensive research" with ThinkPad loyalists and other users around the world.
So why does Lenovo appear to have got everything so wrong?
Not Your Father's ThinkPad - Unfortunately
Chiclet keyboards. Removing the buttons from the touchpad. Eliminating the removable battery. And loading Windows 8 without the benefit of an IPS (In-Plane Switching technology) display, let alone a touchscreen. All flaws that show Lenovo is heading in the direction of budget-conscious design decisions, rather than designing the bulletproof, bulldog-lovely black bento boxes that generations of users have used and cherished.
Traditionally, the ThinkPad has been the staple of quality employers everywhere. Nothing against the Mac, but if you worked with Windows, there was nothing better than a ThinkPad for everyday use. ThinkPads offered the basics: extras like the screen and graphics were nothing to write home about, and I found that the Wi-Fi would whimper and cower from Macs during crowded keynote sessions. But the ThinkPad's keyboards verged on the iconic, and I owned ThinkPads that I dropped - twice - and they survived just fine.
Lenovo may be trying to drag its users kicking and clawing out of the past. I'm willing to concede - grudgingly - that the Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga keyboard isn't bad, and it appears to be either close or identical to the T431s. I tend to prefer the keyboards used by the larger Asus models, and my notes tell me that Samsung's keyboards aren't bad, either. But chiclet keys simply lack the travel of a traditional ThinkPad keyboard, let alone the mechanical monsters that shipped with the original IBM PCs.
First up is what Lenovo calls its most powerful mobile workstation ever, the ThinkPad W540 -- clearly aimed at competing with the notebooks like the latest high-powered M-Series Precision models from Dell. The Chinese manufacturer backs its claim up with the inclusion of a 15.5-inch 3K IPS display, delivering a 2,880 x 1,620 resolution. While powered by Intel's quad-core i7 processor, the W540 takes it to the next level with NVIDIA's latest flagship Quadro GPU and support for up to 32GB of RAM and a full two terabytes of storage. That's all packed into a chassis that measures 27mm at its thickest point, weighs 5.45 pounds and delivers around six hours on a full charge of its six-cell removable battery. Lenovo has yet to set a price for the W540 but says it'll go on sale in November.
This portable 15.6" workstation is the thinnest and lightest in its class, yet sacrifices nothing in terms of speed, power, and durability. Graphics-intensive, ISV-certified applications with blazing-fast processing and advanced graphics technology, plus ThinkPad's known reliability, mean you can handle any heavy-computational task from anywhere you want to be.Does it make you hungry? Keep your eye on: http://shop.lenovo.com/us/en/laptops/thinkpad/w-series/w540/
Most of them seem to be fine, the dual-battery is a very good feature (+1 Lenovo), but it will be better if we have a Full HD IPS display here. And you should wait for a good coupon up comming time. "Thers's more thinking in a ThinkPad".
The 12.5" ThinkPad X240 Ultrabook™ is thin, light, built to last, and ready for business. Power Bridge technology lets you go ten or more hours without plugging in, vPro gives you the ultimate in manageability, and plenty of other features let you take your business on the road.Build 1 for thinking more: http://shop.lenovo.com/us/en/laptops/thinkpad/x-series/x240