Lenovo Ultrabook, 7-inch tablet on the way

Lenovo is readying both an Ultrabook and a 7-inch tablet for the U.S. market. The former would be Lenovo's first official foray into the Ultrabook market.

Brooke Crothers Former CNET contributor
Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.
Brooke Crothers

Lenovo is expected to announce an Ultrabook and a 7-inch Android tablet in the coming weeks, CNET has learned.

Lenovo announced an Ultrabook-like laptop last year: the IdeaPad U260.
Lenovo announced an Ultrabook-like laptop last year: the IdeaPad U260. CNET Reviews

The IdeaPad U300s would be Lenovo's first portable tagged as an Ultrabook--a category of sub-0.8-inch-thick laptops that has many of the hallmarks of Apple's MacBook Air. That is, weighing typically 3 pounds or less, constructed from special materials like aluminum or carbon fiber, powered by Intel Sandy Bridge processors, and priced--at least some models--below $1,000.

During Lenovo's earnings conference call last week, Chief Operating Officer Rory Read said that Ultrabooks would "reach mainstream price points...that were only 18 months ago in premium segments."

"The Ultrabook, like the tablet, is a legitimate member of the high-mobility class of devices," said Roger Kay, the principal analyst at Endpoint Technologies. The initial iteration of the Ultrabook is expected to hew to the traditional clamshell laptop design. "So, it's a very portable device that comes in a very useful form factor," Kay said.

A video of the U300s appeared in late May from the Computex show floor. Cosmetically, it resembles the 0.7-inch-thick IdeaPad U260 announced last November.

But that's not all Lenovo has in store. The 7-inch IdeaPad A1 tablet is also expected to be rolled out. A similar tablet has already gone on sale in China, according to Netbook News. The tablet for the China market is spec'd with a 1,024x600 display, Android 2.3 Gingerbread, a 1GHz Texas Instruments OMAP 3622 processor, 512MB system memory, 16GB storage, and micro-USB and microSD slots.