updated 07:40 am EST, Fri March 12, 2010
Lenovo to shift to smartphones, 3G portables
The vast majority of Lenovo's sales will come from Internet-capable portable devices in five years, company chief Yang Yuanqing stated on Friday. He observed that ThinkPads and IdeaPads already outweigh desktops but that fully 70 to 80 percent of Lenovo's devices will be mobile Internet devices of some kind within as little as three and no more than five years. Many of these will be smartphones, but they should also include crossover devices such as the IdeaPad U1 notebook/tablet hybrid and the Skylight smartbook.
Most of its strategy for 2010 will involve pushing into relatively underserved areas for the company, such as middle Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. Its longer-term "protect and attack" strategy would focus on solidifying performance in China before shifting attention to other markets.
The approach puts it into more direct competition with both established notebook rivals like Acer and HP but also firms whose lineups have only partially overlapped with Lenovo's in recent years, such as Apple and HTC. Lenovo has just recently entered touchscreen smartphones in earnest with the Ophone O1 and the upcoming LePhone, and devices like the U1 are likely to clash with the iPad as well as existing and widely rumored UMPC and tablet models from HTC.