| SAN FRANCISCO
SAN FRANCISCO Jan 5 Lenovo Group (0992.HK),
seeking to set itself apart in a crowded field of laptop
competitors, is releasing what the company says is the first
dual-screen notebook computer.
It is one of several laptops that the world's No. 4
personal computer maker is debuting this week at the Consumer
Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. Although overall PC demand
has been hurt by the global economic slowdown, notebooks have
continued to show strength.
The ThinkPad W700ds has a main 17-inch LCD screen, along
with a 10.6-inch screen that slides out to the right from
behind. The second screen can be angled in by about 30
Wes Williams, the ThinkPad's marketing manager, said
business people have grown accustomed to the convenience of two
screens at their work. The new ThinkPad will ensure that their
work "isn't compromised when they go mobile."
However, the new laptop is neither light nor cheap. It
weighs in at 11 pounds and will sell for $3,600.
China-based Lenovo, which bought IBM's PC business in 2005,
held a PC market share of around 7.5 percent in the third
quarter, according to research group data, trailing
first-ranked Hewlett-Packard (HPQ.N), then Dell DELL.O and
Acer (2353.TW). Lenovo posted a 78 percent profit decline for
the September quarter.
The company has been criticized for being slow to enter the
consumer PC market, and Lenovo's electronics show offerings
include several new products aimed at that segment, like the
IdeaCentre A600 desktop, a new all-in-one PC with a bit of a
The thin, sleek device features a high-definition,
21.5-inch frameless screen and a digital TV tuner. But the
innovation here comes with the A600's remote control, which
also functions as an air mouse for the PC, a controller for
motion-controlled games, and a voice-over-IP handset. The A600
starts at $999, although the model with the special remote will
Lenovo will also expand its line of IdeaPad consumer
notebooks, which it launched at CES last year. This time around
it will debut the new Y-series.
The series includes three new models, including the Y650, a
16-inch notebook that the company says is the lightest and
thinnest in its class at 1-inch thick and 5.6 pounds.
The Y650, which will start at around $1,200, will come
equipped with a multi-touch touchpad and an ambient light
sensor that automatically adjusts the screen's brightness.
Lenovo will also use CES to offer a refresh of its S10
netbook, which the company launched last August.
The low-cost, ultra-portable category is shaping up to be
one of the hottest of 2009, and Lenovo will have to play catch
up. According to DisplaySearch, the company ranked tenth in
third-quarter netbook shipments.
(Reporting by Gabriel Madway; Editing by Tim Dobbyn)