Ready for one awesome Easter present? Well, it appears that Lenovo's having a rough time keeping a lid on its new products this weekend, and we just got a hold of a juicy PowerPoint that reveals a new ThinkPad tablet for "on-the-go professionals." No, this isn't a Windows 7 convertible like you’d expect — this is a full-fledged Android 3.0 slate complete with an optional pen and an accompanying "keyboard portfolio case." It’s also going to have an IPS display and a dual-core Tegra 2 processor. It sounds killer and we’ve got all the details on what's shaping up to be the most interesting Android 3.0 tablet we've seen yet — hit the break for full details!
Like the rest of the Honeycomb tablets, the ThinkPad Tablet or Think Slate — it seems to go by both monikers in the slides — will be powered by an NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor, sports front and rear cameras, and will be available with 16, 32, and 64GB storage options. But more interesting is what’s on the exterior of this 1.6-pound slab: it will have a 10.1-inch, 1280 x 800 IPS capacitive display with a "true pen" option for "sketching and note-taking." The latter sounds a lot like what HTC’s got going on with its Flyer, which certainly makes sense considering N-Trig (the maker of the touchscreen) has promised multiple pen-equipped Android tablets this year. Surrounding the .55-inch thin tablet, Lenovo’s got USB 2.0, Micro USB, and mini-HDMI ports as well as a full-sized SD card slot. Throw in the 3G and 4G connectivity options that are mentioned and we’re pretty much sold on this thing being the mother of Honeycomb tablets.
There aren’t many details on the keyboard, but from the picture it looks like it’s got a touchpad, and if we know Lenovo, the deck and keys will be some of the most comfortable out there.
It’s not really enough to say the ThinkPad Tablet runs Honeycomb since it appears that lots of effort has gone into the interface and software that Lenovo’s been cooking up. As the image above shows, Lenovo’s crafted it’s own Android 3.0 skin, or what it seems to be calling the Lenovo Family UI. It looks a lot like the Skylight interface that we’ve seen before on the consumer-aimed Le Pad, but on top of that Lenovo’s heavily emphasizing business features and security software with this tablet. Promising "seamless integration with your existing IT infrastructure," it will support Cisco’s enterprise software and will be offered with Symantec, McAfee, Computrace, and a slew of other security apps. If you’re interested in how Lenovo’s targeting this for business deployment, you’ll want to check out the slides below. For what it's worth, our source tells us that Lenovo's been spending lots of time getting the software just right and that these slides are a few months old, which means the interface may change by the time it hits the market.
Pricing and availability
So when is this thing coming, and how much is it going to suck out of your wallet? That’s a good question. Our source had told us that this was slated for an earlier release but that it was pushed for software development. According to the document, it's targeted for an August launch, but there are also a few mentions of July. Something tells us this thing will definitely be out by September since there’s no doubt that it makes an interesting back-to-school gadget. As for pricing, our source also told us it was designed to be competitive with the iPad and the document lists it at $499. We’re assuming the active digitizer option and keyboard portfolio will be competitively priced add-ons. That’s all we’ve got for now, but don’t you doubt it -- we’ll be keeping our eyes and ears open about what’s looking to be the most feature-packed Honeycomb tablet yet.
Update: Ah yes, some have noticed that a handful of slides are marked 2009. Something tells us this was a mistake on Lenovo's part, considering there was no such thing as Android 3.0 two years ago. Again, as we previously stated, these slides are a few months old, but we have heard that this product is very much still in the works.