Enid Burns for redOrbit.com – Your Universe Online
Lenovo is starting down the road with a love, hate relationship with Microsoft. The Chinese hardware manufacturer is going head-to-head with Microsoft’s Surface tablet, but says it has better hardware that will give the ThinkPad Tablet 2 an edge over Microsoft’s own tablet.
On its conference call presenting Q1 2013 earnings, an analyst asked how Lenovo feels about competing with Microsoft’s Surface tablet. “Although we don’t like Microsoft providing hardware, for us, it just adds one more competitor,” said Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanqing. CNET News reported the exchange.
Lenovo cites experience in the hardware business as an edge over Microsoft. “[They’re] just one of our many competitors. WE are still confident that we are providing much better hardware than our competitors including Microsoft.,” Yuanqing said.
The ThinkPad 2 tablet runs the Windows 8 operating system. Yuanqing continued, “They are strong in software, but [we] don’t believe they can provide the best hardware in the world. Lenovo can.”
While Lenovo’s Yuanqing presented a bullish attitude on the company’s forthcoming tablet, and how it will be seen in the market, he did offer concessions to Microsoft, in terms of the software. “To be frank, we’re not that worried about [Surface]. Microsoft is our strategy partner. We are very optimistic on the Windows 8 launch, so we will fully leverage that to launch our new products,” Yuanqing said.
Lenovo is not alone in feelings about Microsoft getting into the hardware game with the Surface tablet. Acer had words to say about Microsoft getting into the tablet arena, Slashgear reports.
Microsoft expected some friction with its partners in the market. In SEC filings released last month, the software company stated that the Surface tablet offering might ruffle some feathers. While Lenovo says Microsoft is inexperienced in hardware, the company may not be entirely correct. Microsoft has hardware experience with its Xbox and Xbox 360 console systems. Microsoft added the Kinect, gesture-based controller to the Xbox 360 console.
The concept of Surface is also not new. Microsoft originally launched Surface as a table, which offered an interactive touch screen as the table top. For several years Microsoft has used the Surface table at trade shows and events to draw interest to its software.
Microsoft is not alone as a software company providing the operating system, and now getting into the hardware business. Google recently launched its Nexus 7 tablet, which runs on the Google-created Android operating system. The Nexus 7 tablet has been well received by consumers. Asus manufactures the Nexus 7 tablet.
The Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 2 will be in stores on October 28 when Windows 8 debuts. The tablet runs Windows 8 professional using a next-generation Intel Atom processor. The Lenovo tablet will have a 10.1-inch screen. The Microsoft Surfact tablet line has two models, one running Windows RT on a Tegra processor, and one running Windows 8 on an ultrabook-grade Intel Core i5 CPU.