Lenovo is reportedly planning to launch a tablet called LePad before the year's end. Like the Lenovo LePhone, the LePad will run Google's Android OS and put a focus on 3G.
PC-maker Lenovo will launch a tablet device running Google's Android
operating system before the end of this year, according to a report in TradingMarkets.com
The tablet, called the LePad, will "echo LePhone," Lenovo's
Android-running smartphone, in functions like email and Web browsing,
Lenovo Group Senior Vice President Liu Jun told Trading Markets. Lenovo
first introduced the slim LePhone - which features a 3.7-inch display and 3G, WiFi, Bluetooth and GPS connectivity
- in January, though there's been little mention of it in U.S. markets since.
The site added that Liu said the LePad will be a "crucial part" of
Lenovo's mobile Internet strategy, as it looks to expand "in the 3G
While Lenovo has for years made ThinkPad and IdeaPad convertible
tablets, with major appeal to health care, field service and other
enterprise verticals, the LePad appears to be more consumer-geared.
Following the success of Apple's iPad, tablet PCs are increasingly
being added to manufacturers' roadmaps, and the LePad may wind up
competing against not just the Apple iPad but a number of products
about to come online.
For example, Hewlett-Packard, which holds top billing in worldwide
PC market share, is said to be working on various tablets, each running
a different operating system. While it has reportedly put an
Android-running tablet on hold this year, in mid July it applied to trademark the term PalmPad
- likely for a tablet running Palm's WebOS.
Google and Verizon Wireless have also announced that they're at work on an Android-based tablet.
New tablets are expected to come to market in the second half of
2010, and on July 20 ABI Research increased its forecast for media
tablet shipments in 2010 to 11 million tablets. "Assuming that
competing tablets from other vendors do arrive in the second half of
the year as expected, we believe that the iPad will account for a
significant portion - but not all - of the projected 11 million units,"
ABI Principal Analyst Jeff Orr said in a statement.
ABI added that the buzz around tablets is affecting other parts of
the consumer electronics industry. "Most of the volume that we've
projected for the [mobile internet device] category since 2007 is now
being taken over by other device form factors: media tablets, but also
smartphones," said Orr, "which are assuming more and more of the
functionality that was envisioned for these -non-voice handsets.'"
Lenovo may additionally add to this disruptive group of devices.
Following the release of the LePad, Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanqing told
Trading Markets that the Internet-focused Lenovo Group is poised to
offer "a series of new products."