RealTime IT News

Lenovo Launching Next Round of Think PCs

NEW YORK -- Lenovo Group Ltd, the world's third-biggest personal computer maker, on Tuesday unveiled its first new Think-branded products since buying the PC unit of International Business Machines in 2005.

China's top computer maker announced two products, the ThinkStation S10 and the ThinkStation D10, both aimed at professionals in industries such as oil and gas exploration, computer-aided design and digital content creation.

The National Basketball Association and car racing team AT&T Williams Formula One are evaluating the products, Lenovo said.

IBM used to market ThinkPad laptop computers before selling the line to Lenovo as it struggled with tough competition.

"This is Lenovo stepping out from under IBM's umbrella and trying to establish an identity of their own," said Enderle Group principal analyst Rob Enderle. He added that workstations for business clients were also key for IBM.

But Enderle said the Chinese company's expected move into the consumer PC market next year would probably be more crucial to its growth.

"Moving into the consumer market is probably what's going to provide them with their biggest boost because they become more broad," Enderle said.

Businesses represent about 70 percent of the PC market but consumers, which take the remaining share, are the faster-growing segment, the analyst said.

Lenovo, which focuses primarily on business customers, had an 8.2 percent share of the PC market in the third quarter, followed by consumer-focused Acer Inc of Taiwan at 8.1 percent.

Both companies trail market leaders Hewlett-Packard Co and Dell Inc.

Lenovo's focus on energy savings could boost sales of its ThinkStations, which boast 80 percent power efficiency, leaving only 20 percent of electricity wasted, Enderle said. He estimates average industry efficiency is closer to 60 percent.

The new computers run on chips from Intel Corp and will be available in January through Lenovo's business partners and on its Web site, with the S10 starting at about $1,199 and the D10 at about $1,739.