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CES 2013: Lenovo Enters Table – Not Tablet – Game

Tom Brewster is TechWeek Europe's Security Correspondent. He has also been named BT Information Security Journalist of the Year in 2012 and 2013.

Lenovo launches a table – essentially a giant tablet

Lenovo has launched its first ever “table” PC at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas and is hoping home users will jump on board.

Not to be confused with tablets, these devices actually resemble giant tablets, providing a non-mobile surface which multiple users can interact with by touch, which is typically mounted horizontally. Lenovo’s IdeaCentre Horizon table PC comes with a 27-inch screen, 10-finger multi-touch technology, allowing two or more users to work on the machine at the same time, and will run Windows 8.

Lenovo gets feet on the table

Users can get hold of apps for the Horizon via the Lenovo App Shop, a dedicated apps store powered by Intel AppUp, which has over 5,000 bits of software for users to play around with. There’s also an NVIDIA GeForce graphics card and Intel Core i7 processors packed inside.

Lenovo also showed off a monster 39-inch table PC, codenamed Gamma.

“We’ve seen technology shifts across the four screens, from the desktop to the laptop, tablet and smartphone, and yet, while people have more computing power than ever before, there is still room for technologies like Horizon that bring people together,” said Peter Hortensius, president of the product group at Lenovo

“Horizon makes personal computing interpersonal computing with shared, collaborative experiences among several people.”

Whilst the machine is being sold as both a consumer and productivity device, it comes at a hefty price in the US: approximately $1,699. UK pricing will be announced soon, Lenovo said.

It’s a brave move from Lenovo, the Chinese manufacturer that has been climbing the rankings in PC sales, challenging HP for the number one spot last year and rising above Dell into number two.

lenovo ideacentre horizonTables have not been a major success in the past. In 2009, Microsoft offered a large expensive table, which was then called the Surface – a name now given to its regular-sized tablets.

The Microsoft machine was far more expensive than the Lenovo option, however. It seems the Chinese firm is hoping a lower cost of entry will attract users.

Alex Waterston, strategist from digital agency TH_NK. told TechWeekEurope cost would make the machines more attractive for rich home-owners.

“Affordable coffee table computers are a tempting, potential new front in the battleground of the connected home,” he said.

Xerox XRCE - sifting documents for a legal case There should be plenty of room for business use too. “I could see a heap of interesting uses for companies but they’re all quite experimental: restaurants using them for ordering and playing games while you wait for your food, retail outlets displaying digital, interactive catalogues and the new raft of smaller, city centre car show rooms letting people explore their ranges interactively,” Waterston added.

In fact, the table format is widely used already in research sites such as Xerox Labs in Europe. These organisations tend to construct their own table, by using a large screen TV, combined with a digitising overlay (shown in the image here)

Meanwhile, Lenovo is shoving a load of other devices out at CES. Some fresh IdeaPad U Ultrabooks were unveiled, also with Windows 8 and 10-finger touch support, as were the  IdeaPad Z400 and Z500 laptops.

The company has also two created two new divisions: the Lenovo Business Group and the Think Business Group.

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