Lenovo says 'mainstream' Ultrabooks coming

A Lenovo executive waxes eloquent about his company's Ultrabook strategy after it reported first-quarter earnings.

Lenovo, which reported first-quarter earnings in Hong Kong on Thursday, discussed its upcoming strategy for Ultrabooks--ultraslim, light Windows laptops that compete with the MacBook Air.

The ThinkPad X1 represents the kind of ultraslim design that will hit mainstream price points in the coming quarters, Lenovo said Thursday.
The ThinkPad X1 represents the kind of ultraslim design that will hit mainstream price points in the coming quarters, Lenovo said Thursday. Lenovo

During the earnings conference call on Thursday, Chief Operating Officer Rory Read spoke about Lenovo's Ultrabook strategy in response to a question from an analyst. "Lenovo will invest in innovation to be a leader in that space and that will drive demand. No doubt," he said, referring to the Intel-based laptops.

Read continued. "You'll see us introduce over the coming quarters the ability to reach mainstream price points with [Ultrabook] solutions that were only 18 months ago in premium segments. That's just a natural evolution of the space."

He implied that mainstream pricing--which can be a frustratingly vague term but typically means under $1,000--would happen in 2012. "I wouldn't say by the end of the year necessarily but...that's definitely going to happen."

Ultrabooks are defined, in part, by being very thin but also having long battery life, he said.

The world's third-largest PC maker's first-quarter net profit doubled to $108.8 million from the year-earlier period when it was $54.9 million. Revenue was up 15 percent to $5.92 billion from $5.15 billion. Both profit and revenue beat analyst estimates.

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