By Alexandra Burlacu | Aug 18, 2012 10:02 AM EDT
Lenovo, one of the world's largest PC makers, said recently that it was not worried about Microsoft's Surface tablets, as Lenovo is confident in its ability to create premium, top-of-the-line products that provide an advanced Windows experience. Microsoft will become a rival, but it will also remain a strategic partner to Lenovo.
Microsoft's Surface tablet marks the first time the software giant has introduced an own-brand PC product. The move caused controversy among its partners, and Acer even warned Microsoft that its move may hurt the tablet ecosystem and eventually force Acer to seek other alternatives to Windows. With its entry into the hardware business, Microsoft aims to provide a point of reference for Windows RT and Windows 8-based devices. By releasing its own-brand Surface slates, the software giant reportedly plans to show users what to expect and demand from Windows-based tablets, thus limiting the success of sub-par devices.
Lenovo, however, is well-known for its premium devices. The company has recently unveiled its ThinkPad Tablet 2 slate featuring Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system, which targets business users. The device will use Intel Atom SoC and will support capabilities including a fingerprint reader.
Microsoft's Surface with Windows 8 and Intel Core i5 may provide better performance than Lenovo's ThinkPad Tablet 2, but it will be heavier, bulkier, and have a shorter battery life.
"Although we do not like Microsoft providing hardware, for us, it just adds one more competitor. [Microsoft is] just one of our many competitors. We are still confident that we are providing better hardware than our competitors, including Microsoft. They are strong in software, but [we] don't believe they can provide the best hardware in the world. Lenovo can," Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanging said during the company's latest conference call with analysts.
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