Lenovo Reveals U1 Hybrid Notebook And LePad Tablet

Lenovo really is on a roll here at this year's CES. First came a bunch of new notebooks, and now this: the official introduction of the IdeaPad U1 Hybrid with LePad Slate. Now, we have heard about and seen these devices before. Even as far back as CES 2010, this units were making the rounds as prototype devices. It's been a long ride for them. There was even rumblings last year that the U1 would be scraped altogether. But now, the company is clearing the air.

This particular product isn't exactly like the ones we saw before. Instead, it's a 2-in-1 device that combines the mobility of a slate with access to Android applications, along with a keyboard base that makes you feel more comfortable within Windows 7. They can be used both separately or together using a unique Hybrid Switch dual-more option. Pretty innovative stuff, if we should say so ourselves.

The LePad Slate itself is under 2lbs. and measures just 0.5" thick. It uses a 10.1" panel, supports both landscape and portrait orientations, and relies on a Snapdragon processor to power things. It's also got a 3G module embedded for constant connectivity, and it uses Android 2.2 as the OS. The only catch is that Flash Player 10.1 isn't yet supported, but Lenovo hopes to add that functionality shortly.

Then there's the IdeaPad U1. This is a Windows 7-based device that uses an Intel CULV processor. The LePad is able to slide into the U1's base, creating a hybrid laptop of sorts. Users can switch between Win7 and Android with a simple flip of a switch.

The IdeaPad U1 with LePad will go on sale first in China during Q1 2011, and yes, the LePad Slate can be purchased separately from the U1 base. The LePad starts at around $520, and the U1 Hybrid Laptop starts at around $1300. That's a pretty expensive combo, but you do get two operating systems and a sense of mobility that is currently unrivaled by anything else out there.

Best of Both Worlds: Lenovo’s Dual Mode Hybrid System New Two-in-One Mobile Device Speaks Android and Windows

LePad multi-touch Android slate for mobility and U1 laptop PC base for full Windows 7 experience

CES 2011, Las Vegas – January 5, 2011: Lenovo (HKSE: 992) (ADR: LNVGY) today announced the IdeaPad U1 hybrid with LePad slate, a unique two-in-one device that combines the mobility of a media rich, high-definition slate featuring access to Android applications and a keyboard base that provides a full Windows 7 computing experience. Offering great performance, both separately and together for a unique Hybrid Switch dual mode capability to switch between two different operating systems, Lenovo delivers to consumers an uncompromised mobile and computing experience.

“Our IdeaPad U1 and LePad truly fits the mobile lifestyle,” said Liu Jun, senior vice president, Idea Product Group, Lenovo. “Use the light-weight slate when you’re mobile, and then simply slide it into the U1 base when you need to create and edit content. Consumers shouldn’t have to adapt their lifestyle to technology, and this product definitely delivers twice the functionality and fun in one device.”

LePad Slate – Light, Long-Lasting and Application Rich
At under two pounds and only half an inch in thickness, the extremely portable LePad, powered by a Qualcomm’s SnapdragonTM processor, keeps users incredibly mobile all day with up to eight hours of battery life. LePad is available in four stylish colors with two different textures: scarlet, white, brown leather textured and black leather textured. The 10.1-inch widescreen and rich, high definition LePad slate runs in landscape and portrait modes. Users can consume content such as video, surf the Internet, access social networks from their fingertips, as well as tap out messages and email. It also has a front camera for taking pictures or video chat.

"We are excited that Lenovo has chosen our Snapdragon processor to power the LePad slate," said Luis Pineda, senior vice president of marketing and product management for Qualcomm CDMA Technologies. "Lenovo’s innovative 3G connected slate, powered by our Snapdragon platform, enables a high performance, always connected experience for consumers on the go.”

Built upon Android 2.2., Lenovo customized the LePad slate with an optimized Android media experience on LePad’s larger screen size, starting with an attractive four-pane easy to use interface and a distinctive Lenovo-developed push service that delivers email, news and other content in real time, eliminating the need to constantly open a browser and log in. LePad leverages the Android ecosystem Lenovo has already established in China for the LePhone Smartphone. LePad users, in addition to enjoying many preloaded applications, also have access to thousands of custom Android apps from China’s top content partners that are optimized uniquely for its large screen. Lenovo plans for LePad to support Adobe® Flash® Player 10.1, looking to provide users a more complete Web browsing experience.
IdeaPad U1 for a Complete Laptop
For users who need the full functionality of a mainstream laptop for doing content creation with Windows-based productivity applications, the LePad can slide into the U1 base. The IdeaPad U1 hybrid laptop with a full keyboard transforms the user interface on LePad into Windows 7. The base features a Windows 7 Home Premium operating system and an Intel CULV processor. With the Hybrid Switch feature, users can seamlessly change operating systems to support a continuous Web browsing experience.

Pricing and Availability1
The Lenovo IdeaPad U1 with LePad will be available beginning in China in the first quarter of 2011. The LePad slate can be purchased separately from the U1 base. The LePad slate starts at approximately RMB 3,499 (approximately US $520), and the U1 hybrid laptop starts at approximately RMB 8,888 (approximately US $1,300). For detailed pricing and availability for other markets, please contact your Lenovo representative.
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About Lenovo
Lenovo (HKSE: 992) (ADR: LNVGY) is dedicated to building exceptionally engineered personal computers. Lenovo’s business model is built on innovation, operational efficiency and customer satisfaction as well as a focus on investment in emerging markets. Formed by Lenovo Group’s acquisition of the former IBM Personal Computing Division, the company develops, manufactures and markets reliable, high-quality, secure and easy-to-use technology products and services worldwide. Lenovo has major research centers in Yamato, Japan; Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, China; and Raleigh, North Carolina. For more information see www.lenovo.com.