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Lenovo Group, a leading maker of personal computers for business and enterprise customers, said that it would create a slate-type personal computer for clients that currently use ThinkPad-branded notebooks. The company did not share details whether appropriate tablet is already in development or only in plans for creation.

For many years Lenovo has been for years selling convertible personal computers that can transform themselves into tablets when necessary, yet, they feature proper keyboards and other notebook-specific functionality. The devices are pretty bulky, unlike slates like BlackBerry PlayBook or iPad, yet, they fulfill requirements of professionals who need them for rather specific work. At present slim and miniature tablets are often aimed at consumers, whereas business users either have to rely onto notebooks or restrict keeping confidential information on slate-type systems. But that situation may change, according to Lenovo.

“Tablets are currently more consumer-focused and designed to view media, but many enterprise customers are interested in tablets as mobile devices that could complement PCs. As it makes sense we'll absolutely enter that market. I think we have a great foundation from which to build for that said Peter Hortensius,” senior vice president of the Think product group at Lenovo, in an interview with IDG News Service.

Keeping in mind the fact that enterprise and business users need a lot more than reading electronic book, checking web-sites or email as well as watch videos, it will be interesting to see how Lenovo plans to tackle the issue of slot input using touch-screen instead of hardware keyboard.

Lenovo is not the first company to announce plans for a slate aimed at businesses and enterprises. Cisco, HP and Research in Motion have all unveiled appropriate products. However, all of those tablets resemble Apple iPad, which is aimed strictly at consumers.

Tags: Lenovo, ThinkPad, Cisco, HP, RIM, Blackberry

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