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  1. Lenovo's Legion Phone Duel 2 snaps alarmingly easy in durability test Serious structural issues Editor's take: Zack notes that durability is only one aspect of a smartphone, and that a case could solve the majority of structural issues exhibited by the Lenovo Legion Phone Duel 2. Still, it has to be terribly concerning for prospective buyers to see how easily the device was ruined. Imagine accidentally sitting down with it in your back pocket and realizing you’re suddenly out of at least $950. Lenovo’s new Legion Phone Dual 2 officially broke cover earlier this week and literally did the same thing in Jerry Rig Everything’s latest video. Apparently, Lenovo didn’t get Apple’s “Bendgate” memo from 2014 that large phones need extra attention to overcome structural weaknesses. In Zack’s latest video, he performs the usual gamut of torture tests on the Legion Phone Dual 2. Nothing really stands out as overly concerning until he attempts to bend the handset. As you’ll see, that’s when things go horribly wrong. The phone snapped like a twig without very much force applied. Upon further inspection, Zack found the handset broke cleanly along the antenna lines, which are usually made of plastic to allow wireless signals to easily pass. This was confirmed on the other side, as it failed seemingly just as easily, resulting in three distinct pieces. Source: Lenovo's Legion Phone Duel 2 snaps alarmingly easy in durability test
  2. Lenovo’s second-gen Legion gaming phone packs dual cooling fans Lenovo has unveiled its second-generation gaming handset, the Legion Phone Duel 2. It includes dual cooling fans, a Snapdragon 888, up to 18GB of RAM and a 44MP pop-up camera. It’s available in Europe in May — though a North American release is up in the air. The rumors were true. Lenovo has unveiled its second-generation gaming handset, the Legion Phone Duel 2, and it’s an even more audacious design than the first model. The Legion Phone Duel 2 centers around a new cooling system that mates a vapor chamber with dual cooling fans. The Snapdragon 888 inside should stay cool and maintain peak performance even during lengthy gaming sessions, in other words. As you’ve likely noticed, that cooling dictates the unique look of the phone — the Snapdragon sits at the middle of the chip to ensure “unparalleled symmetry” in cooling when you’re playing games in a landscape orientation. Credit: Lenovo You’ll also find a host of upgrades useful when you’re not playing the latest online brawler. The Legion Phone Duel 2 boasts an even larger 6.92-inch (if still 1080p) 144Hz AMOLED display with HDR10+ support and an extra-quick 720Hz touch sampling rate. You’ll also find up to 18GB of RAM, a larger 5,500mAh battery, and an upgraded 44MP pop-up side camera for selfies and livestreaming. Control plays an important role in the Legion Phone Duel 2. Lenovo offers eight virtual keys, including four ultrasonic shoulder buttons, two rear capacitance points and two force-based points in the screen itself. You’ll have plenty of shortcuts for fast-paced games. Accordingly, a new dual haptic feedback system delivers more precise responses to your actions. The Duel 2 carries over the 64MP main camera, 16MP ultra-wide cam, dual USB-C ports and 90W fast charging of the first Legion Phone. There may be few complaints, though, when the dual-cell battery layout promises a full charge in 30 minutes. There’s a better chance of buying Lenovo’s latest model, too. The Legion Phone Duel 2 is launching in its native China in April in black and white color schemes, but it’s also coming to Europe in May starting at a price of €799 (about $948) with 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage, or €999 with 16GB of RAM and 512GB of space. And crucially, people on the other side of the planet might not be left out. Lenovo would only say that North American availability is “to be determined,” but that’s still a huge improvement over the no-show of the first Legion. As with last year, Lenovo has one main challenge: Asus. The ROG Phone 5 offers similar performance, and it’s already available. If you just want a fast gaming phone, you can buy something now. However, the Legion Phone Duel 2 costs less in its 12GB form (it’s similarly priced in 16GB trim), touts faster charging, offers more virtual controls, and doesn’t require an add-on for extra cooling. If you’re comfortable with Lenovo and don’t mind the wait, it might offer the stronger value. Source: Lenovo’s second-gen Legion gaming phone packs dual cooling fans
  3. Lenovo announces a slew of affordable and durable laptops for education Each of Lenovo's new laptops for education meets tests for durability and is available as a Windows PC or Chromebook. What you need to know Lenovo announced a new generation of laptops for education today. The laptops are each available as either Windows PCs or Chromebooks. The new laptops start at $299 and will start rolling out in May 2021. Source: Lenovo Lenovo announced a new generation of laptops built for education. The new laptops each have Windows and Chromebook versions and start at $299. The Lenovo 14w Gen 2 ($334) and Lenovo 300w Gen 3 ($359) launch in May 2021 while the Lenovo 100w Gen 3 ($299) and Lenovo 500w Gen 3 ($429) will be available in June 2021. All of the new laptops from Lenovo meet the MIL-SPEC 801H standard for durability. They also have reinforced ports and hinges, rubber bumpers, and improved spill resistance. Each of them also features Corning Gorilla Glass. Each of Lenovo's new laptops also has a USB-C port that supports quick charging that can provide up to 80% battery from an hour of charging. They also all have optional Wi-Fi 6, and some models have an option for 4G LTE. The new Lenovo laptops are available as either Windows devices or Chromebooks. You can tell which type of device they are by the final letter of their name. The Lenovo 14w, 100w, 300w, and 500w Gen 3 are all Windows devices. The Lenovo 14e, 100e, 300e, and 500w Gen 3 are all Chromebooks. Source: Lenovo The Gen 2 Lenovo 14w runs on an AMD processor. The Windows version comes in storm black, as opposed to the gray aluminum design of its Chromebook counterpart. The Lenovo 500w runs on an Intel Pentium N6000 processor. The Lenovo 100w and 300w run on AMD 3015e processors. Alongside the new laptops, Lenovo announced the ThinkVision T24t monitor. It's a touchscreen monitor with a 23.8-inch display. It has a one-cable design that allows people to connect to a variety of devices, including Windows PCs, Chromebooks, and Android devices through USB-C. The connection also supports up to 75W charging. The T24t has natural low blue light technology that's certified Eyesafe, and that has a TÜV Rheinland Eye Comfort certification. Source: Lenovo announces a slew of affordable and durable laptops for education
  4. Buy A Lenovo Gaming PC, Get A Free Stadia Pro Membership Lenovo has partnered up with Google to offer free Stadia Pro memberships to anyone that buys a Legion gaming PC. If that sounds like a good deal to you, and you were already considering a new gaming PC, then you may want to consider something from Lenovo's Legion line. Having said that the offer also includes IdeaPad PCs. Worth keeping in mind though is that this probably isn't every single PC from these two lineups. The offer is listed as only being compatible with select Lenovo Legion and Lenovo IdeaPad PCs. And that means you'll need to double check if the ones you're looking at are part of the offer. Unfortunately, Lenovo doesn't seem to have that detail listed with the announcement. So it may be something consumers have to ask about when purchasing. The Lenovo Stadia Pro offer starts rolling out this month Lenovo says the offer begins rolling out this month, so it's not quite available yet. The more important detail though relates to the PCs you buy. While this only includes Legion and IdeaPad PCs, it can be a desktop or a laptop. So you have some wiggle room there. However, Lenovo does mention that they have to be manufactured after April 5, 2021. Which suggests that the laptop or desktop you buy will have to be from fresh stock that arrives in stores on or around that date. If you buy from older stock, say from last December, then those machines probably aren't eligible for the offer. On top of that, you have to live in one of the supported regions. Those include the US, Canada, UK, and a handful of other countries across Europe. Consider which Pro games are on offer Since the offer is going to be starting within the next couple of weeks, it's likely to last a while. How long is unclear but chances are, it'll be more than a few weeks. With that said, you may want to consider what Stadia Pro games on offer for free before you buy. Since these rotate out every month, and your free trial will include 90 days of Pro without having to pay for it, you may want to save the offer claim for when there are better games available. Or perhaps more specifically, games which you're more interested in. If the current crop of free games for March doesn't interest you, you might want to wait until April or May's free games before you claim your free membership. Source: Buy A Lenovo Gaming PC, Get A Free Stadia Pro Membership
  5. Lenovo Announces New ThinkPads Lenovo today announced new ThinkPad T- and L-series portable PCs, plus completely redesigned ThinkPad X13 and X13 Yoga PCs, a new ThinkPad P-series portable workstation, and a ThinkVision P40w-20 professional display. “The new ThinkPad laptops offer customer choice to select the most appropriate configuration for their needs,” the Lenovo announcement notes. “Select models are available in black or storm grey with options including 11th-generation Intel Core vPro processors or the latest AMD Ryzen 5000-series mobile processors.” There’s a lot going on here, but I was particularly interested in two data points Lenovo provided in a briefing next week: The firm, which is the world’s biggest maker of PCs, sells more ThinkPads than it does other brands of PCs. And within the ThinkPad brand, the T- and X-series represent about 50 percent of all unit sales. Here’s a quick rundown of what’s new. ThinkPad T-series. The ThinkPad T14 and T14s are available in both Intel and AMD variants, while the T15s comes in Intel. They each provide Wi-Fi 6 with optional 5G, a FIPS-201 compliant fingerprint reader, 16:9 displays, black and storm gray color choices, new user-facing stereo Dolby Audio speakers, Full HD webcams, and Human Presence Detection capabilities. The T15s adds a numeric keyboard, optional NVIDIA MX450 graphics, and an optional 600 nit 4K Dolby Vision display. The new T-series debut between March and May, depending on model, and start at $1159. ThinkPad X13 and X13 Yoga. The ThinkPad X13 and X13 Yoga both feature new 16:10 displays with minimal bezels, wider and smoother touchpads, and a combo fingerprint reader/power buttons. Each can be had with Intel processors, while the X13 is also available in AMD. Each features Wi-Fi 6 and optional 5G, Full HD displays (and, on the X13, HD displays), Dolby Audio speakers, and Human Presence Detection (on Intel models). The X13 is available in both black and storm gray colors and a larger battery than before. The new X13 and X13 Yoga debut between March and April, depending on model, and start at $1299. ThinkPad L14 and L15. The L-series is the most affordable family of ThinkPads, and the new L14 and L15 come in both Intel and AMD variants, offering UHD, Iris Xe, and MX450 graphics options, Wi-Fi 6 capabilities, HD or HD hybrid IR webcams, and Dolby Audio. The new L-series debut in May and start at $689. ThinkPad P14s, P14, and P15s. Lenovo’s new mobile workstations come in both Intel and AMD variants and provide up to NVIDIA T500 graphics, Wi-Fi 6, up to 4×4 MIMO CAT16 4G, HD or HD hybrid IR webcams, Dolby Audio with user-facing stereo speakers, and color-accurate X-Rite factory color calibration. The new P-series workstations debut between March and May, depending on model, and start at $1169. ThinkVision P40w. Described as the world’s first Intel AMT-capable Thunderbolt 4 monitor, the P40w is a 39.7-inch curved ultra-wide and nearly bezel-less (on three sides) display with a resolution of 5120 x 2160, Natural Low Blue Light technology, and 12-port USB-C docking capabilities. The P40w debuts in June and will cost $1699. Source: Lenovo Announces New ThinkPads
  6. Lenovo Q3 2020: Working from home prompts record-breaking results Lenovo says the profit surge is due to the emerging “work-, learn- and play-from-home culture.” Lenovo has recorded "record" Q3 2020 financial results with group revenue climbing 22% year-on-year. On Wednesday, the Hong Kong-based PC maker published its third-quarter earnings, including revenue of $17.2 billion -- up 22% year-on-year -- and basic earnings per share (EPS) of $3.31 (25.66 HK cents). In Q2 2020, Lenovo reported revenues of $14.5 billion -- up 7% year-on-year -- and $2.59 EPS. The tech giant says that Q3 2020 marks a "second consecutive record-breaking quarter, with revenue, pre-tax income, and net income all reporting record highs." "Lenovo's sustained growth has been boosted by the company's innovative product portfolio adapting quickly to meet the work-, learn- and play-from-home culture of a rapidly changing world, while transformation investments continue to drive new long-term growth opportunities," the company added. In the third quarter, pre-tax income was reported as $591 million, an increase of 52% year-over-year and an increase from the second quarter's $470 million. Net income for Q3 is $395 million, in comparison to $310 million in Q2 2020. Lenovo's Intelligent Devices Group (IDG), including PCs and smart devices, reported strong revenue over the quarter. The PC and Smart Devices Group (PCSD) reported revenues of $14 billion, up 27% year-on-year, a payment-to-income (PTI) ratio of $925 million, and a profit margin of 6.6%. Lenovo says that the company now claims 25.3% of the global PC market. IDG's second business unit, the Mobile Business Group (MBG), has returned to growth according to Lenovo, "delivering double-digit revenue growth year-on-year, and recovering from the impact of COVID-19 by not only resuming profitability, but also achieving its highest profitability since the Motorola business was acquired." Lenovo's Data Center Group (DCG) recorded revenues of $1.63 billion. The enterprise and SMB segment was responsible for $1 billion in revenue. Lenovo's Intelligent Transformation businesses, including total software and services, recorded revenues of $1.4 billion, together with a growth rate of close to 36%. Attached services, Managed Services, and the Solutions group achieved year-on-year growth of approximately 26%, 73%, and 49% respectively. Lenovo's business outlook is expected to stay positive as the market continues to demand home PCs and accessories, with current work from home and hybrid employment models believed to continue well into 2021 -- and, perhaps, beyond. In addition, the tech giant has announced shifts in its organizational structure. From April 1, services and solutions arms will merge into a new Solutions & Services Group (SSG). This will simplify Lenovo into three main business groups -- SSG, IDG, and ISG. "Clearly, 2020 was a challenging year that brought remarkable changes to our world, yet Lenovo quickly responded to the changing market driven by new work and lifestyle trends and delivered strong results," commented Yuanqing Yang, Lenovo Chairman and CEO. "Now, as we begin to see the results of our transformation investments, we will further invest in technology and innovation, drive intelligent transformation across industries, and create sustainable growth." Source: Lenovo Q3 2020: Working from home prompts record-breaking results
  7. Lenovo reveals new consumer PC lineup ahead of CES 2021 Lenovo has announced a suite of new consumer PC products including laptops, tablets, monitors, and an all-in-on desktop PC. The full suite of PC products being unveiled ahead of CES 2021 includes: • IdeaPad 5G (14-inch) • IdeaPad 5 Pro (16-inch, 14-inch) • IdeaPad 5i Pro (16-inch, 14-inch) • Lenovo Tab P11 • Yoga AIO 7 • L27e-30 Monitor • L24i-30 Monitor • LAVIE MINI prototype • LAVIE Pro Mobile laptop Lenovo IdeaPads The highlight devices of Lenovo's CES showcase will be its IdeaPad laptops, one of which features 5G capability, the company reported on Friday. Lenovo is also touting the inclusion of Amazon Alexa Show Mode in full screen, a service replicating an Amazon Echo Show tablet experience on laptops. The Lenovo IdeaPad 5G is a 14-inch clamshell laptop that offers up to 20 hours of battery life (on continuous video playback). Features 5G capability, 4G LTE, a sim-card slot in the side as well as wi-fi 5 connectivity. The 1.2kg device is powered by a Qualcomm® Snapdragon 8cx 5G compute platform and utilises Qualcomm Adreno 680 graphics, as well as and the Snapdragon X55 Modem-RF system for connectivity. It comes with a 14-inch (1920 x 1080) IPS display boasting 300 nits of brightness. The laptop features 8GB LPDDR4X RAM memory and 512GB of PCIe SSD storage. Lenovo also introduced the IdeaPad 5i and 5 Pro PC, which it claims as being the vendor’s most powerful IdeaPad laptops to date. Available as either 14-inch (1.45kg) or 16-inch (2kg) models, the IdeaPad 5 series diverts into its 5i and 5 Pro models based on which CPU family you want. The 5i pro sports an 11th gen Intel Core i7 processor, up to Nvidia MX450 graphics, up to 16GB DDR4 RAM and up to 1TB of SSD storage. The 14-inch model boasts a 56.5WHr battery, while the 16-inch model offers a 75WHr battery. Lenovo IdeaPad 5G Lenovo IdeaPad 5i The 14-inch IdeaPad 5 Pro is powered by an AMD Ryzen mobile processor, with options yet to be announced, as well as an Nvidia mx450 GPU, up to 16GB DDR4 RAM and 1TB of SSD storage, and a 56.5WHR battery. The 16-inch model offers a wider range of GPU options, including Nvidia mobile RTX hardware, up to 32GB RAM and a 75WHr battery. Lenovo IdeaPad 5 Pro Australian pricing on the Lenovo IdeaPad 5G, 5i and 5 Pro are all yet to be confirmed. Lenovo Tab P11 The Lenovo Tab P11, coming to Australia in May and priced at $549, offers an 11-inch high-definition 2K (2000 x 1200) touchscreen IPS LCD display with a brightness max of 400 nits. Powered by a Snapdragon 662 with advanced LTE, integrated Qualcomm FastConnect subsystem and featuring up to 6GB RAM. At full charge, Lenovo reports the tablet can play music for up to 15 hours. The device comes with an optional keyboard pack, a magnetic keyboard cover with a built in trackpad. Another optional extra is the Lenovo Precision Pen 2, which can sense tilt and pressure sensitivity and has a battery life of up to 200 hours. Lenovo Yoga AIO 7 The Yoga AIO 7 will be available in Australia from April 2021, ranging from AUD $2499 to AUD $3999 depending on specs. The all-in-one Windows 10 PC features a unique design with a rotating hinge that allows users to rotate to the 27-inch 4K IPS display between a horizontal and vertical display mode. A wireless casting feature also allows for remote display streaming from a tablet or smartphone without having to power on the desktop. On the specs front, at the top end, the desktop can be powered by an AMD Ryzen 7 4800H processor and paired with an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 GPU. The PC supports up to 32GB of RAM and can manage a mix of SSD and HDD options. Lenovo L24i-30 and L27e-30 Monitors Lenovo is also rolling out two new monitors in the L24i-30 and the L27e-30, offering IPS panels at 23.8 inch and 27 inches respectively. The devices boast anti-glare and eye comfort technology and come ready to support AMD FreeSync technology. Lenovo L27e-30 The L27e-30 will be available in Australia from February 2021 for $249, while the L24i-30 launches March 2021 at $189. LAVIE devices Also being announced at CES is Lenovo’s newest LAVIE devices from NEC Personal Computers, a joint venture company of Lenovo and NEC Corporation. The 8-inch LAVIE Mini is spruiked as an ultra-mobile PC prototype built for mobile entertainment, featuring gaming accessories like an attachable controller grip. The Mini features up to an 11th Gen Intel® Core™ i7 mobile processor with Intel Iris® Xe graphics, sports an 8-inch WUXGA (1920 x 1200) touch panel display and weighs 579 grams. LAVIE Mini The LAVIE MINI comes with an optional dock, supporting HDMI connection to TV displays. The LAVIE Pro Mobile is a light-weight clam-shell designed notebook weighing 889 grams with a slim, 16.7mm body. The Pro Mobile can be powered by up to an 11th Gen Intel Core i7 with Intel Iris X graphics. It has an 13.3-inch display. LAVIE Pro Mobile Australian pricing and availability for the new LAVIE devices are yet to be confirmed. Source: Lenovo reveals new consumer PC lineup ahead of CES 2021
  8. Lenovo's ThinkReality A3 smart glasses are built to get work done Lenovo built its new smart glasses to help people get work done. What you need to know Lenovo announced the ThinkReality A3 smart glasses at CES 2021. The smart glasses can show up to five virtual displays at once. The smart glasses can tether to PCs or select Motorola phones. Lenovo announced its ThinkReality A3 smart glasses at CES 2021. The smart glasses worth with PCs or select Motorola smartphones through a USB-C connection. The AR glasses run on the Qualcomm Snapdragon XR1 platform and have stereoscopic 180p displays. The ThinkReality A3 smart glasses will be available starting in mid-2021. Lenovo has not released price details for the glasses at this time. The ThinkReality A3 glasses have two different types of cameras. For room-scale tracking, they have dual-fish-eye cameras. The smart glasses also have an 8MP RGB camera that allows people to share 1080p video. With the glasses, people can see up to five virtual displays. Lenovo highlights how these large virtual monitors can help people be more productive while also increasing privacy. These virtual displays can be used to run Windows tools and applications. The glasses can also immerse people into content such as architecture or other large-scale projects. The virtual monitors displayed by the smart glasses are optimized for Lenovo's ThinkPad laptops and mobile workstations. Source: Lenovo In addition to connecting to PCs, you can tether the ThinkReality A3 smart glasses to select Motorola phones for AR-supported tasks. Lenovo explains that the ThinkVision Reality A3 smart glasses could be used in a number of scenarios, including factory floors, laboratories, retail environments, and hospitality spaces. Lenovo states that Motorola smartphones using Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 series processors or better that have DisplayPort capability can work with the ThinkReality A3 smart glasses. The company does not specify the PC requirements for using the AR smart glasses. Source: Lenovo's ThinkReality A3 smart glasses are built to get work done
  9. Microsoft issues Windows 10 BSOD warning for some Lenovo users Windows 10’s latest batch of the cumulative update is causing a series of new problems for users, including Blue Screen of Death, performance issues, and another bug that breaks down Start Menu. Microsoft has now confirmed that updates released in the last two months could crash Lenovo ThinkPad machines with Blue Screen of Death. In a new support document that was quietly published over the weekend, Microsoft has warned that it has observed a number of other critical errors caused by KB4568831 or newer, which also includes the September 2020 patch. Critical errors include “SYSTEM_THREAD_EXCEPTION_NOT_HANDLED” crash, stop error message screen, 0xc0000005 access denied, and system crash with process ldiagio.sys. In a separate support document, Lenovo also acknowledged the reports and highlighted the possible errors that users may encounter after installing Windows 10’s latest cumulative update: BSOD when booting, starting Lenovo Vantage and running Windows Defender Scan. Windows Hello issues. Errors in Device Manager for Intel Management Engine and IR Camera. The problem appears to have been caused by a compatibility issue between Windows 10’s cumulative update, UEFI settings, and Lenovo’s Vantage app. With a cumulative update, Microsoft made a change that restricts how processes can access PCI device configuration and feature in UEFI could trigger this behaviour, which causes a Blue Screen. Microsoft and Lenovo confirmed that affected models include ThinkPad machines from 2019 and 2020. While Blue Screen of Death is a serious problem, the good news is that there’s a relatively simple fix, according to both Microsoft and Lenovo. If you get Blue Screen of Death on a ThinkPad machine, Microsoft recommends you to disable Enhanced Windows Biometric Security setting in UEFI. If you’re unable to disable this setting, you should uninstall the updates released in September or August and pause Windows Update until Microsoft issues a fix. “Lenovo and Microsoft are working on a fix for this problem,” Microsoft said. Not just Lenovo devices, according to reports As we’ve seen on forums, Reddit and other social media platforms, these Blue Screen of Death or performance issues aren’t limited to ThinkPad machines. Some non-Lenovo PCs have reportedly been BSOD’ed by Microsoft’s latest round of cumulative update, but again the fix is relatively simple: uninstall the patch and pause updates. If you’re unable to uninstall the patch, you can also try disabling Intel Virtualization Technology. Otherwise, the last option is using system restore to roll back to the previous version of Windows 10. Microsoft issues Windows 10 BSOD warning for some Lenovo users
  10. Lenovo warns the Windows 10 August 2020 Cumulative Update can cause Thinkpad BSODs Lenovo has posted an advisory warning Thinkpad owners that the Windows 10 August 2020 Update can cause BSOD for some users. The BSOD reads: SYSTEM_THREAD_EXCEPTION_NOT_HANDLED – ldiagio.sys. The article warns: After installing the August 2020 cumulative update for Windows 10 Version 2004, users may notice one or more of the following symptoms: Blue Screen of Death (BSoD) when booting Blue Screen of Death (BSoD) when starting Lenovo Vantage Blue Screen of Death (BSoD) when running Windows Defender Scan Can’t login by Face with Windows Hello Errors in Device Manager related to Intel Management Engine Errors in Device Manager related to IR Camera The issue appears to be due to a new BIOS feature – Enhanced Windows Biometric Security, and can be mitigated by disabling it at BIOS Setup -> Security -> Virtualization menu. Lenovo says the Enhanced Windows Biometric Security feature is not currently implemented, and disabling it will therefore not have any negative consequences. WindowsLatest reports that users of other PC brands are also affected, and if you are similarly affected the fix may also work for you. Lenovo warns the Windows 10 August 2020 Cumulative Update can cause Thinkpad BSODs
  11. Lenovo begins selling OEM Ubuntu PCs to the general public It's getting easier to find OEM-installed and -supported Linux computers. Enlarge / No, that's not a pink panther—that catlike critter is a fossa, and it's both mascot and default wallpaper of Ubuntu 20.04, preloaded on this ThinkStation P920. Lenovo 107 with 57 posters participating, including story author Beginning today, Lenovo is offering a greatly expanded selection of OEM Linux PCs to the general public. Earlier this year, Lenovo began offering Fedora Linux pre-installed on laptop systems including Thinkpad P1 Gen 2, Thinkpad P54, and Thinkpad X1 Gen 8. Today's announcement makes Ubuntu Linux available on a considerably broader swath of both desktop and laptop PCs. ThinkPad T14 (AMD and Intel) ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 5 ThinkPad P1 Gen 3 ThinkPad T14s (AMD and Intel) ThinkPad L14 ThinkStation P340 ThinkPad T15p ThinkPad L15 ThinkStation P340 Tiny ThinkPad T15 ThinkPad P15s ThinkStation P520c ThinkPad X13 (AMD and Intel) ThinkPad P15v ThinkStation P520 ThinkPad X13 Yoga ThinkPad P15 ThinkStation P620 ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 3 ThinkPad P17 ThinkStation P720 ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 8 ThinkPad P14s ThinkStation P920 The devices themselves—and their Ubuntu certifications—aren't new, but the public accessibility is. Previously, these systems were only available to enterprise customers via custom bid, but the 27 new models—mostly featuring Ubuntu 20.04, except for the L series laptops featuring Ubuntu 18.04—will now be available for retail purchase through Lenovo.com. Just beware of the footnote warning that some models may be limited to specific markets. Although it has been simple for individual customers "in the know" about enterprise-only model certifications to buy those machines with Windows and install Ubuntu themselves, the new OEM program removes roadblocks in both knowing which systems to buy and getting factory support on them once installed. Igor Bergman, Lenovo's VP of PCSD Software and Cloud, said the goal of the certification and pre-installation program is "to remove the complexity, and provide the Linux community with the premium experience that [Lenovo's] customers know us for." Canonical VP of Engineering Dean Henrichsmeyer added, "this collaboration [offers] assurance of long-term stability, added security, and simplified IT management." Lenovo will be offering a full range of support including both Web- and phone-based assistance with any platform issues associated with the Ubuntu pre-installed systems. Lenovo begins selling OEM Ubuntu PCs to the general public
  12. Exec adopts a build-and-they-will-come mentality Canalys Forum 2020 Forecasting tech sales is a dark art at the best of times but in a pandemic it takes on a whole new level of complexity. Unperturbed, Lenovo's president and COO is predicting shipment growth not seen in a decade for 2021. Gianfranco Lanci said the outbreak of the virus has "accelerated a remote revolution. Over the past several months we have seen the resurgence of PC sales. Talk of the PC dying and being taken over by tablets and smartphones are over. "I believe we are on track for a nearly 300 million total PC market in 2021, that is about 20-30 million of additional growth. This volume is significant, we haven’t seen a number like this in over ten years. The total PC installed base in growing, the refresh will be quicker. I believe we will continue to see demand in 12 to 18 months as people continue to work from home." IDC disagrees: it expects sales to be in the black this year, but is anticipating a return to decline by next year. Lanci, who was appearing at the virtual Canalys Forum 2020 via webcast, said notebooks for education, prosumer portables, and subscription services for things like desktop-as-a-service are all booming. So too are larger displays, webcams, mice, and keyboards. The same stuff that's been flying out of the doors since lockdown began in March. Armed with a KPMG survey of 315 CEOs that says 69 per cent of them will be "downsizing office space", Lanci claimed "the days of face-to-face collaboration and business travel will not recover for another two years." Dell said in August that it anticipates 60 per cent of its staff not ever returning to the office on a regular basis. Fujitsu is closing half of its office real estate in Japan and will equip people to work from home or regional hubs. The Institute of Directors this week agreed there will be no mass walk-in once COVID-19 clears. Lenovo told us the refresh cycle was contributing to demand, in addition to the work-from-home movement. It said the forecasts made by its executive were based on its "reading of the market" by "staying close to end customers" and talking frequently to the resellers that sell its kit. "I think it's a challenging time to make forecasts," Fiona O'Brien, chief channel officer and head of operations EMEA, told The Reg. "And it has, of course, implications in the supply chain because what you forecast now has implications on what is available for you to sell and to ship for the next six to nine months… our bet is that that demand will continue to be high." Supply chain disruptions caused by factory closures earlier in the year resulted in a shortage of components and therefore PCs. The problem was exacerbated by a spike in demand. Lenovo, like all other PC makers, wasn't immune to this and still isn't. O'Brien acknowledged "industry shortages on the PC side" and said entry-level consumer laptops including Chromebooks were a "symptom of the shift". With this in mind, Lenovo last week confirmed plans to open a new in-house manufacturing facility in Hungary by spring, building desktop, workstations, and data centre gear, but not laptops (where the pressure has been felt most acutely). "That will help us even better serve our European customers, particularly for those who require a very fast response and delivery within the European context," O'Brien said. Now Lenovo just has to make sure it has enough components – chips and panels – to keep up with the demand it is expecting. Easier said than done. Source
  13. Lenovo swings for the fences with unusual Tiger Lake laptop designs X1 Nano is ultra lightweight at just under two pounds—but X1 Fold, well, folds. Enlarge / The X1 Fold is aiming for the same basic target as the Samsung Galaxy Fold—but in a more laptop-ish form factor. Lenovo 81 with 70 posters participating, including story author Lenovo is following on Dell's heels with an announcement of two 13-inch Intel Tiger Lake powered laptops of its own—but Lenovo's new designs are considerably further "out there" than Dell's. Lenovo's two new designs are the X1 Nano—a traditional but ultralight laptop weighing in at less than two pounds—and X1 Fold, a not-exactly-laptop design with a folding screen. Yes, you read that right—the X1 Fold is to feature a folding LCD display, aiming at the same basic target Samsung did with the Galaxy Fold. Our own Ron Amadeo reviewed the Galaxy Fold in January and was very unimpressed, but it has been nearly a year, and Lenovo may well have figured out a few things that Samsung did not. We're reserving judgment on the X1 Fold until we can get one in our hands. X1 Nano First image of article image gallery. Please visit the source link to see all images. The X1 Nano is a pretty straightforward design—it's extremely sleek and lightweight, but apart from that, it's a standard 13-inch laptop. It will be available in black, as shown above, with no further colors announced at this time. It's worth stressing just how thin and lightweight the X1 Nano is, though—it's about 25-percent lighter than the XPS 13, and 10-percent thinner. Its keyboard has an uncompressed arrow key layout—but it also has the Thinkpad Trackpoint, which is usually either loved or hated with equal ferocity. Rounding out the major differences, the X1 Nano has large cooling vents along the right side—a more lap- or blanket-friendly arrangement than the underside-only cooling vents on the XPS 13. As far as ports go, the X1 Nano is even more minimalistic—you get two Thunderbolt 4/USB-C ports and a 3.5mm audio jack. That's it. The X1 Nano will start at $1,400 and is expected to be available in Q4 2020. X1 Fold First image of article image gallery. Please visit the source link to see all images. The X1 Fold is another Tiger Lake powered, 13-inch lightweight laptop design from Lenovo. Except it's not quite a laptop, according to Lenovo's own press about it. Except when it is, of course. Confused yet? We don't blame you. We suspect it's a little too early for anyone to really know quite how a folding screen is (and is not) truly more useful than a conventional one—but if you're an early adopter, the Fold is—or at least will be—here for you. Fully unfolded, the X1 Fold sports a 4:3 13.3-inch QXGA (2048×1536) touchscreen display, at 300 nits brightness. But it doesn't need to be fully unfolded—it can be folded roughly in half either inward or outward and can be configured to display separate windows on either side of the seam. The Fold almost certainly packs a better camera than the X1 Nano; the Nano's spec sheet simply specifies "HD camera"—which could mean as little as 0.9MP (720p)—but the Fold's specifies 5MP (2560×1920). The X1 Fold is available to preorder now, with prices starting at $2,500. We do not have concrete shipping or general availability dates yet. Specifications Lenovo is playing its hardware and software configuration options much closer to the chest than Dell did; we've been given a general range but no specifics on many configurable options, such as operating system and CPU. What we do know so far follows below. X1 Nano X1 Fold Operating System Up to Windows 10 Pro or Linux Windows 10 Pro CPU Up to 11th-generation Core i7 with Iris Xe graphics Intel Core Processor with Intel Hybrid Technology and UHD 11 graphics RAM Up to 16GiB LPDDR4x 8GiB LPDDR4x Storage Up to 1TB PCIe SSD Up to 1TB PCIe SSD Display 13-inch 2K (2160×1350) 450 nit 13-inch 2K (2160×1350) 450 nit, touch 13.3-inch flexible QXGA OLED 4:3 (2048×1536) 300 nit, touch Battery 48 Watt-hour battery, up to 17 hours claimed runtime 50 Watt-hour battery, up to 11 hours claimed runtime Optical Drive none none Ports 2x Thunderbolt 4/USB type-C 1x 3.5mm audio combo jack 2x Thunderbolt 4/USB type-C 1 SIM card Network Connectivity Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX-201 LTE 5G CAT20 LTE 4G CAT9 Bluetooth 5.0 Wi-Fi 6 (unspecified) 5G sub-6GHz with 4G LTE (CAT20) coverage Bluetooth 5.1 Dimensions 11.5×8.2×0.6 inches (293×208×14mm) Unfolded: 299×236×12mm Folded: 158×236×28mm Weight Starting at 1.99 lbs (0.9 kg) 2.2 lbs (1 kg) Lenovo swings for the fences with unusual Tiger Lake laptop designs (To view the article's image galleries, please visit the above link)
  14. Dell and Lenovo publish list of tested devices compatible with Windows 10 version 2004 How do you find out if a particular device is compatible with Microsoft's latest version of Windows 10, Windows 10 version 2004 or the May 2020 update? While you could give it a try and see how it goes, it is usually better to find out if a device is compatible before you run the update. Windows Update might block the update on the device as Microsoft tends to roll out updates over time and blocks certain devices from getting the update. All bets are off on the other hand if you install the operating system using an ISO image. You will notice that a device is not compatible during installation, but that means spending some time up to that point. PC manufacturers Dell and Lenovo have published compatibility lists. These cover devices that the companies have tested to find out if a device is compatible with the new Windows version. It is a good idea for Dell and Lenovo PC owners to check the compatibility list first before the update is installed. Lenovo Lenovo customers may point the web browser of their choice to this support page on the Lenovo website. You may enter a serial number at the top to find your PC or laptop, use the "select your product" option, or use Ctrl-F to find it in the listing. Lenovo lists the following product families as the main entry points. ThinkPad laptops Lenovo Notebook/Ideapad ThinkCentre+AIO IdeaCentre+AIO ThinkStation Limitations may be displayed below each product category listing that highlight specific issues for certain devices. Workarounds and mitigations may be displayed to resolve the issue, e.g. by installing a newer driver or even restoring the older version of Windows. Dell Dell's support page lists product groups and devices as well. The company provides information on determining the computer model; helpful for customers who don't know the exact make and model of the device. Everyone else may use Ctrl-F to jump to the device directly on the page. All devices listed by Dell have been tested for compatibility and should work with the Windows 10 version 2004 operating system. Dell notes that it has not tested any other models and that it won't provide driver updates for untested devices. Closing Words The compatibility listings are helpful but it is still possible that a feature update may not install correctly; incompatibilities may be caused by installed applications or additional hardware devices. Devices not listed on the manufacturer's website may still receive the Windows 10 version 2004 update just fine, as not being listed on the page simply means that the device has not been tested by Dell or Lenovo. Tip: you may also want to check Microsoft's list of known issues of Windows 10 version 2004. Dell and Lenovo publish list of tested devices compatible with Windows 10 version 2004
  15. Lenovo announces new ThinkCentres and ThinkPads with Intel vPro processors ThinkCentre M70s On top of Intel's announcement yesterday of its 10th-generation 'Comet Lake' vPro processors, Lenovo is announcing some refreshed Think business PCs. They come from the ThinkCentre desktop lineup, and interestingly, there are a couple from the ThinkPad P-series mobile workstation lineup as well. There are a bunch of variations from the ThinkCentre M-series, including the 21.5-inch M70a and larger M90a all-in-one models, SFF desktops, and towers. With Intel vPro, Lenovo ThinkShield, and more, there's a major focus on both security and manageability. The M90 is the most premium of the M-series, packing up to a Core i9 vPro. There are both tower and small-form-factor variants available, and Lenovo boasts that you can get it with a Flex-IO display while connecting additional screens via USB Type-C, HDMI, DisplayPort, or VGA. ThinkCentre-in-One 22 ThinkCentre-in-One is meant to be a modular PC, and it comes in 22- and 24-inch sizes. All you need to do is add a ThinkCentre Tiny desktop, which doesn't require any tools to set up. Finally, Lenovo introduced the ThinkPad P14s and P15s, which are successors to the P43s and P53s, respectively. They include up to a hexa-core Core i7-10810U, which has a turbo boost clock speed of up to 4.9GHz. They also come with Nvidia Quadro graphics for your mobile workstation needs, Wi-Fi 6, up to 2TB of storage, Ubuntu and Red Hat Linux support, and more. All of the new ThinkCentres (including the M70 series, M70a AIO, M80 series, M90 series, and M90 AIO) are coming in June, but the only one with confirmed pricing is the M90 AIO, which starts at $1,099. The ThinkPad P14s and P15s are coming this month, starting at $1,599 and $1,579, respectively. Source: Lenovo announces new ThinkCentres and ThinkPads with Intel vPro processors (Neowin)
  16. Plaintiffs allege company’s ad software caused privacy, security flaws Settlement needs final approval from federal judge Lenovo Group Ltd. can move ahead with an $8.3 million settlement to end a class action that its ad software exposed customer laptops to performance, privacy, and security problems. The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California granted initial approval of the settlement Nov. 21, four months after Lenovo and the consumer class filed with the court to end the spyware action. The SuperFish software, which Lenovo began installing in 2014, could access customer Social Security numbers, financial data, and sensitive heath information, the court said. Lenovo’s issues highlight device-maker privacy and security concerns when trying to capture the value of customer data. Many companies install software, usually with user permission, that tracks internet purchases and website traffic to deliver tailored ads to consumers. But, without proper notice and consent, companies can run into costly regulatory enforcement and consumer class actions. Class representatives Jessica Bennett, Richard Krause, Robert Ravencamp, and John Whittle brought claims in 2015 under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, the federal Wiretap Act, and California and New York consumer protection laws. Both sides reached an agreement to settle the claims in April. Lenovo is set to pay $7.3 million to the settlement fund, and SuperFish will kick in another $1 million from a prior deal with consumers over the spyware issue. None of the funds will revert back to Lenovo or SuperFish and instead will go to “all persons who purchased a Lenovo computer in the United States on which VisualDiscovery was installed by Lenovo,” U.S. Judge Haywood S. Gilliam, Jr. wrote Nov. 21. The computer maker in 2017 reached a no-fault settlement with the Federal Trade Commission and 32 state attorneys general over the privacy incident. As part of the FTC deal, it promised to not misrepresent features of installed software and undergo 20 years of agency audits. Lenovo also paid $3.5 million to state authorities under a separate agreement. Pritzer Levine, Girard Gibbs, and Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy represent the settlement class. SuperFish is represent by Fenwick and West LLP. Lenovo is represented by Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice PLLC and K&L Gates LLP. The case is In re Lenovo Adware Litig., N.D. Cal., No. 15-md-02624, preliminary approval 11/21/18. Source
  17. 7 PHOTOS Lenovo Yoga A940 Lenovo is the latest brand that launches a Microsoft Surface Studio rival, as the company took the wraps off the Yoga A940 at the CES 2019 show this week. The new all-in-one PC is based on the same approach like the Surface Studio, coming with a 27-inch 4K display that supports tilting, a content creation dial, and pen input. It is specifically aimed at creators, just like the Surface, and it uses a rotating hinge that lets the screen slide into drafting mode easily. As compared to the Surface Dial, however, Lenovo’s content creation dial is placed on the side, but it can also be configured with different settings and features for Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, and other apps. Going on sale in March The new Lenovo all-in-one PC can be equipped with an up to 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8700 processor paired with a maximum of 32GB RAM. In terms of storage, you get up to 1TB 7200 HDD, according to the official website, but an SSD option is likely as well. The device uses an AMD Radeon RX560 4GB GDDR5 graphics card, and boasts two 3W speakers and two 5W front-facing speakers. There is a plethora of connectivity options, like two USB 2.0 ports on the side, one USB Type-C Intel Thunderbolt connector on the back, alongside four USB 3.0 ports and HDMI. Additionally, you also get several other gimmicks, including an integrated wireless charging dock for your phone and a dedicated spot for the pen. LED light under the display for low-light condition is also offered. Lenovo will begin selling the new all-in-one PC in March, and pricing will start at $2,349, which means that it will be some $1,000 cheaper than the Microsoft Surface Studio. It remains to be seen how successful it is going to be, but judging from the features mentioned above, the Yoga A940 is like to become one of the best rivals to the Studio. source
  18. 4 PHOTOS Lenovo Yoga S940 In addition to the all-in-one PC that’s basically one of the most advanced Microsoft Surface Studio alternatives, Lenovo also used the CES 2019 show to take the wraps off the Yoga S940. While the name might not say much at first, this new Yoga laptop is packed with AI technology, and it all starts with a feature that the company calls Smart Assist. The purpose of this new tool is to use sensors and AI to provide you with innovative features like alerting you whenever someone is looking over your shoulder right into the screen. Furthermore, the AI-based tech can detect when you move your eyes to an external screen connected to your laptop, so it can automatically move the content where your eyes and gaze are. Lenovo says that AI features can also help during video calls, so when you’re talking to a contact, all ambient noises are automatically reduced to reduce disruptions. Powered by Windows 10 And there’s more. Smart Assist also packs a Windows Hello-based camera, which allows you to log in to your device without providing a password, and the system can learn the way you use the device and optimize power settings for longer battery life. Lenovo says that in some cases, you can get up to 15 hours of battery life in FHD mode. In terms of hardware, the device runs on Whiskey Lake CPUs up to Intel Core i7-8700T, and it can be equipped with a maximum of 16GB RAM and 1TB of storage. It features a 13.9-inch display that also supports 4K resolutions with 500 nits peak brightness. The laptop tips the scales at just 1.2kg (2.65lbs) light and is only 12.2mm (0.48in) thin. It obviously runs Windows 10. Lenovo will begin selling the Yoga S940 in May this year, and the base model will be priced at $1,499. source
  19. At CES 2019, Lenovo announced the updated ThinkPad X1 Yoga convertible. This new ThinkPad X1 Yoga 6th gen device comes with a completely new chassis. Instead of traditional ThinkPad carbon fiber black chassis, this device comes with CNC-machined aluminium chassis and it is ‘Iron Grey’ in color. Lenovo has reduced the overall footprint of the device, thanks to smaller bezels around the display. Lenovo has also addressed the main customer feedback around sound quality from the previous generation. In this 6th gen ThinkPad X1 Yoga, Lenovo has included Dolby Atmos sound system with two user facing speakers and a sub-woofer. Users can select between 4K HDR IPS display, WQHD IPS Touch display and Full HD IPS Touch display with ePrivacy feature. The ThinkPad X1 Yoga 6th gen is powered by 8th gen Intel Core processors, up to 16GB RAM and 2TB PCIe SSD. As usual, this device will offer plenty of connectivity options. You have got 2 USB-A ports, 2 USB-C Thunderbolt ports, 3.5mm audio jack, and a full HDMI port. The ThinkPad X1 Yoga 2019 will be available in 2019 starting at $1929. source
  20. Lenovo showed off the folding ThinkPad X1 and Project Limitless at Lenovo Tech World First image of article image slideshow. Please visit the source link to see all images. Shown off by Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanqing, the device features a folding 13.3-inch 2K OLED display which comes with a stand and docking station. Interestingly the folding screen for the laptop is made by the same company, BOE, as the Motorola Razr, which is encouraging from a durability and performance point of view. Lenovo first showed off the device in May this year and since then Microsoft has announced Windows 10 X, which is specially designed for dual-screen laptops. Lenovo did not reveal the exact pricing and availability details yet but did say the device is expected in Q2 2020. Lenovo and Qualcomm also made much of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx-powered Project Limitless laptop with the Snapdragon X55 5G modem. Lenovo said the laptop can download at 1 Gb/sec and was ready for 8K streaming, all while sipping at the battery due to the ARM processor. “At Lenovo, we don’t innovate for the sake of technology alone. Everything we do is about improving people’s experience,” said Lenovo’s Consumer Business of Intelligent Devices Group senior vice president and general manager, Johnson Jia. “With real 5G in a PC, it’s all about satisfying users’ need for speed: faster file transfers and streaming in 4K, 8K and even AR/VR; faster and higher quality video chats on-the-go; even faster screen refreshes for mobile gaming. When we say limitless connectivity, we mean it – 5G PC users the world-over will save time, stay productive, or get online entertainment from nearly anywhere, at any time.” Like the ThinkPad X1, Lenovo also remained quiet about pricing and availability but we expect its arrival some time in Q1 2020. Source: Lenovo showed off the folding ThinkPad X1 and Project Limitless at Lenovo Tech World (MSPoweruser) (To view the article's image slideshow, please visit the above link)
  21. Lenovo Voice is an ambitious voice assistant for Windows 10 that, if it worked, could put Cortana to shame Lenovo Voice is a digital voice assistant by Lenovo for Windows 10 which offers a number of interesting voice-based features. It offers the ability to translate languages in real-time, transcribe offline video, and also offer general voice assistant features. The app is now in the Microsoft Store, but unfortunately does not appear to do much yet on my Yoga, with the message: This service is not available yet. The app appears to be aimed mainly at the Chinese market, offering English/Chinese and Japanese translation. It however also offers features such as voice typing which would use usable everywhere. If you have better luck find it in the Store here. A recent non-store version can be found here. Source: Lenovo Voice is an ambitious voice assistant for Windows 10 that, if it worked, could put Cortana to shame (MSPoweruser)
  22. Huge Windows 10 boost as your PC is about to get infinitely faster Your next Windows 10 PC could be 5G ready (Image: MICROSOF) MICROSOFT Windows fans have been shown the future of PCs this morning with Qualcomm and Lenovo announcing the first 5G-ready devices. Lenovo recently released its latest Windows-powered C630 laptop which is joining the growing trend in always-connected Windows 10 PCs. Powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 850 chip, this portable laptop includes a 4G SIM which means you should never be without access to the web no matter where you are. It's impressive stuff but it's about to get even better. Qualcomm and Lenovo have now announced the world’s first 5G connected PC. This device will allow users to access superfast speeds when on the road and it could transform laptops of the future. 5G is the future of mobile networks with it able to beam data to devices at speeds you'd normally expect from fibre broadband. In fact, 5G looks set to be faster than many fixed-line services with speeds that could easily exceed 200Mbps. “Our collaboration with Lenovo will deliver transformative PC user experiences," said Alex Katouzian, senior vice president and general manager, mobile business unit, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “Bandwidth-intensive tasks that involve downloading and uploading large files over a wireless connection can be exponentially faster, thanks to the platform’s impressive performance and power efficiency, this will change the way users interact, connect and communicate with their computing devices.” The new PC will be powered by the Snapdragon 8cx 5G compute platform which Qualcomm is boasting will offer extreme performance, extreme battery life, and extreme connectivity. “5G PCs powered by Snapdragon demonstrate how our ongoing collaboration with Qualcomm Technologies continues to deliver trailblazing PC innovation,” said Johnson Jia, senior vice president, PC Business Group, Lenovo. “Lenovo 5G PCs built on the Snapdragon 8cx 5G compute platform will feature ultra-low latency, remarkable performance, battery life and 5G connectivity that will revolutionize the way we work and play.” EE 5G is launching this week (Image: EE) In addition to the Snapdragon X55 5G modem, the Snapdragon 8cx also incorporates the Snapdragon X24 LTE modem, for connectivity when a 5G network is not available. The modem supports Category 20 LTE, achieving peak download speeds of up to 2 Gbps. And because it’s compatible with more than 90 per cent of global operators, users can rely on their 5G PC to stay connected almost anywhere in the world. The news of this launch comes as EE has revealed that it will be switching on its 5G signal later this week. Thursday 30 May is when customers will begin getting access to the new speeds with 5G initially rolling out in London, Birmingham, Cardiff, Manchester, Edinburgh and Belfast. EE says it will continue to roll out this upgrade throughout the year. Source
  23. Lenovo Smart Clock review: A small smart display that doesn’t display much $89 gets you the most affordable (and limited) Google Assistant display available. Enlarge Valentina Palladino Google, Amazon, Facebook, and the like want to convince you that you need a smart display. But as we've explored in previous reviews, most smart displays are luxury versions of their screen-less counterparts. Everything that you can do with an Amazon Echo or a Google Home can be done with a comparable smart display, but the latter can show you visual information and (in some cases) videos. If you don't care much for visual information in such a device, why spring for a smart display? These devices are hard sells, particularly because most cost $150 or more. Amazon Echo Show 5 Last week, Amazon announced the Echo Show 5, a new 5-inch, rectangular version of the Echo Show. Thanks to its shape and $89 price tag, it's even more similar to Lenovo's Smart Clock than the $129 Echo Spot. Since the Echo Show 5 is only available for preorder right now, we couldn't test it out to compare to the Smart Clock for this review. However, all Echo devices are hosts for Amazon's Alexa voice assistant, so its capabilities are nearly identical to that of the Echo Spot. We've included its specs in the table below, so you can get a better idea of how the Echo Show 5 compares to Lenovo's Smart Clock in terms of hardware. That's not the case with Lenovo's new Smart Clock. It's the first Google-Assistant answer to Amazon's Echo Spot, serving as a tiny smart screen that shows the time by default and can be used to set alarms and do everything a regular Google Home device does. It could be an ideal device for someone who wants a virtual assistant at home and could use some visual information in their daily routine. But most importantly, it's great for those who don't want to spend a lot—Lenovo's Smart Clock costs $79, which is even more affordable than the $129 Echo Spot. But a few big differences distinguish Lenovo's Smart Clock from Amazon's Echo Spot, and they will be make-or-break for some users. We used both devices for about a week simultaneously to see if a tiny smart display is the way to go and how the two compare to each other. Design Lenovo ditched the wood accents it used in its full-sized Smart Display and opted for a soft-touch fabric in the Smart Clock. It's understandable in a device that will likely live on a bedroom nightstand, and it ended up being a quaint addition to mine. It takes up about as much space as my cheap alarm clock does, and I could easily read the time on its 4-inch 480×800 touchscreen. The embedded ambient light sensor automatically adjusts the screen's brightness so you won't be blinded by a harsh square of light in the middle of the night. There are 10 clock faces to choose from, too, so you have some control over the digital aesthetics of your alarm clock. You can even enable "dark mode" to give most clock faces a grayscale effect. Specs compared: Lenovo Smart Clock vs the competition Device Lenovo Smart Clock Amazon Echo Spot Amazon Echo Show 5 Price $79 $129 $89 Processor MediaTek 8167S ARM Cortex-A53 MediaTek MT 8163 Display 4-inch 480×800 IPS touchscreen 2.5-inch 480×480 touchscreen 5.5-inch 960×480 touchscreen Camera None 1 x Front-facing 1 x Front-facing Speakers 1 x 1.5-inch 3W speaker, 2x passive radiators 1 x 1.4-inch speaker 1 x 4W speaker Buttons/ports 1 x mic mute, 1 x volume up/down, 1 x USB 2.0 port 1 x mic/camera disable, 1 x volume up/down, 3.5mm audio output 1 x mic disable, 1 x camera shutter, 1 x volume up/down, 3.5mm audio output Connectivity 802.11ac WLAN, Bluetooth 802.11 a/b/g/n (2.4 and 5 GHz) Dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (2.4 and 5 GHz) Dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth Dimensions 4.483×3.14×3.11 inches 4.1×3.8×3.6 inches 5.8×3.4×2.9 inches Weigh .72 pounds .92 pounds .91 pounds Aside from the display, the Smart Clock has two top buttons for adjusting volume, a power port, a microphone disable switch, and a USB 2.0 port on its body. The latter makes charging smartphones and accessories easy because you can plug charging cables into it instead of an AC outlet or a USB port in a less convenient place next to your bed. Mic-kill switches have become commonplace on devices like these because users increasingly care about their privacy in the wake of AI devices becoming ubiquitous. The Smart Clock doesn't have a camera at all, unlike the Echo Spot, so there's no need for a camera shutter or kill switch. That may be the biggest selling point of the Smart Clock. The decision to leave the camera out of the original Google Home Hub (now called Nest Hub) was confusing because Lenovo's Smart Display included one for Duo video chatting. However, a device as small as the Smart Clock won't be the best video chatting tool, so a camera's usefulness is minimal. Video calling with the Echo Spot will likely come in handy more if you have the device on your office desk. That way, it acts as a hands-free camera with which you can answer video calls using your voice. Placing video calls with the Spot isn't any different from doing so with the Echo Show, either—just ask the device to call a specific contact and, if the contact has an Echo Show or Spot or can be reached via the Alexa app on their smartphone, your video feed will start by default. Saying "Alexa, turn video off" will disable your camera and make the call voice-only. You can also use Alexa's Drop-In feature to "call" other Echo devices in your home—and if one of those devices happens to be an Echo Show, you can video chat with your family in the living room just by using the Echo Spot in your bedroom. Like the Smart Clock, the Echo Spot includes a mic and camera-kill button that sits between the volume up and down buttons. While a camera is a convenient feature to have on the Echo Spot, it makes more sense to include on larger smart screens like the Echo Show or the Nest Hub. If you're resigning yourself to video chatting on a small screen, you might as well just use your smartphone—and with Alexa's mobile app, you can video chat with or Drop-In on any contacts just like you can on any standalone Echo device. Google Assistant vs. Alexa: Tiny screen edition While hardware differences are important, the great divide between the Lenovo Smart Clock and the Echo Spot comes from their virtual assistants—Google Assistant and Alexa, respectively. We've dived deep into both platforms in previous reviews, so we're not going to rehash everything here. However, we paid particular attention to the features that one would expect a smart clock to excel at, namely waking you up, showing and telling personal information, and connecting to smart home systems. Alarms and routines Despite their geometric differences, the Smart Clock and the Echo Spot do similar things with their displays, with telling time being the focus for both. On the Smart Clock, swiping up from the bottom reveals quick-setting icons for changing brightness, volume, and other aspects of the on-screen UI like the clock face. Swiping down from the bottom reveals even more quick settings including icons to edit your alarms, set a nap timer, play music, and control smart lights (if you have any paired through the Google Home app). When an alarm is active on the Smart Clock, a tiny icon appears at the top-right corner of the clock face. When that alarm's time approaches, a larger oval appears underneath the current time that states how much longer until the alarm goes off. This is particularly useful in the mornings when you glance at your alarm clock wondering how many more minutes of precious sleep you have before you need to wake up. You can quickly disable the alarm by tapping on that oval, so if you're like me and frequently wake up five minutes before your alarm goes off, you can spare your partner the rude awakening. The Echo Spot doesn't have the same on-screen mechanism, but it does show your alarm's time below the current time whenever an alarm is set. You can also disable it before it goes off, but you need to tap on the alarm's time and then tap "cancel alarm" to do so. Both devices also have numerous preset alarm tones, and you can also have either device wake you up to your favorite song or artist if you connected your preferred music source (like Spotify, iHeartRadio, and others). Instead of barking multiple, individual commands at the Smart Clock when you wake up each morning, you can set a Good Morning routine full of tasks that the Google Assistant will complete in succession after you say the appropriate command ("OK Google, good morning" or something similar). Alexa has customizable routines as well, and both let you hear weather and traffic information, automatically turn on smart lights, and play specific playlists without you lifting a finger. As with any routine, you need to do all the creation and customization in the Google Home or Alexa mobile app. These smart clocks aren't smart enough to let you drastically edit a routine using their touchscreens. The biggest differences between devices like Lenovo's Smart Clock and the Echo Spot come out when you're customizing a routine or doing anything that involves connecting other devices and accounts to your smart display. The Google Assistant and Alexa can connect to multiple third-party services and devices, but you need to do research before investing in one platform or the other to see if your favorite services are supported. For example, I subscribe to Apple Music—the Google Assistant currently cannot connect to it, but Alexa can. That means all of the music I could play on the Smart Clock had to come from my ad-supported Spotify account. We talked about video chatting previously, but the Smart Clock and the Echo Spot can also show camera feeds from home security devices that you may have around your home. While Alexa can connect to a host of smart security cameras, the Google Assistant only supports Nest cameras at this time. That means that, if you have any cameras that aren't from Nest, you'll have to turn to the accompanying mobile app to check live feeds and recorded footage. Otherwise, the Google Assistant and Alexa both support a wide variety of smart home devices, and there's a lot of overlap. It's worth checking if your current smart lights, thermostats, door locks, and more will work with one or both platforms before deciding which to invest in, but you likely won't have to worry about your devices not being support by either. Both the Google Assistant and Alexa let you create rooms in addition to routines, so you can group smart home devices as you'd like and control some or all of them with the appropriate commands. Personal and visual information While the small screens on both Lenovo's Smart Clock and Amazon's Echo Spot aren't the best for video chatting or watching videos, they are good for displaying bite-sized pieces of information that can help you during your morning routine. One of the first things I asked both devices was for the day's weather forecast—I got the same answers but in very different ways. The Echo Spot took one or two seconds to tell me the high and low temperatures along with sun and cloud icons showing that day's weather forecast. The Smart Clock had most of the same visual and audible information, but it took a whopping 15 seconds to give it to me. This slowness persisted whenever I asked the Google Assistant on the Smart Clock to do anything, including play a song on Spotify, turn on the bedroom lights, or tell me the day and time of the next Raptors' game. It rarely failed to do what I asked it, but it was significantly slower to execute than Alexa was on the Echo Spot despite being on the same Wi-Fi network and positioned next to each other on my nightstand. Multiple people can use both the Smart Clock and the Echo Spot thanks to voice recognition. Google's Voice Match is the more comprehensive of the two, though. This lets the Google Assistant recognize who's speaking when a command is given so it can spit out the proper calendar, photo, flights, and media information. It's a handy feature to have in a smart clock that will be used by more than one person regularly. And now with GSuite integration (currently in beta), the Google Assistant can read off work calendar appointments in addition to appointments scheduled on your personal calendar. Amazon's technology works similarly, but it connects to fewer pieces of personal information (music and shopping lists among them) than Google's Voice Match. Lenovo's Smart Clock may be designed for your nightstand, but you could put it anywhere in your home just like you could the Echo Spot. However, the Smart Clock isn't as useful as Lenovo's full-sized Smart Display or even Google's Nest Hub when it comes to visual information. Take recipes: those larger smart displays can show numerous recipes for chocolate-chip cookies, allowing you to choose from and follow instructions by either using the touchscreen or your voice to advance to the next steps. That's not possible on the Smart Clock—asking how to make chocolate-chip cookies forces the Google Assistant to choose the first recipe it finds in its search and dictate the instructions to you. That's not abnormal for a smart speaker because Amazon's non-display Echo devices give recipes a similar treatment. However, the Echo Spot acts just like a smaller, round version of an Echo Show, creating a list of chocolate-chip cookie recipes complete with photos and videos for you to swipe through and choose from before you begin cooking. You can either have Alexa read the instructions to you, or you can follow the steps written on the Spot's screen. You'll get similar results when asking the Smart Clock a question that could yield a YouTube video answer on Lenovo's larger display or the Nest Hub. Instead of a carousel of video options to choose from, the Smart Clock will only answer you audibly. These inconsistencies make Lenovo's Smart Clock more limited than any Google Assistant smart display. While you may expect to give up some features in a more affordable device like the Smart Clock, it doesn't bode well for the device in the long run—those who thought they were getting a shrunken version of the Nest Hub will be in for a nasty surprise. Mobile apps Devices like the Smart Clock and the Echo Spot act as executors for preferences that you customize within the Google Home and Alexa mobile apps. Neither app is that pleasant to use, but the recently redesigned Alexa mobile app remains leaps and bounds better than the Google Home app. What was once the only true interface for Google's Chromecast is now a confusing amalgamation of every smart home setting you could possibly need. Ars' Ron Amadeo lamented the app's copious menus, endless pages, and duplicated settings when he reviewed the Google Home Hub, and not much has changed since then. Instead, Alexa's mobile app opens to a general homepage that includes weather information and info cards with things like the last Audible audiobook you listened to, your recently accessed to-do list, and suggestions for Alexa Skills and voice commands to try. You can easily navigate to your contacts in the Communicate tab, music and other media in the Play tab, and all of your connected devices (Echo and others) in the Devices tab. If you're more of a list-menu person, you can access everything there as well in addition to lists, alarms and reminders, and a log of your Alexa activity. Visualizing time, but not much else Lenovo's Smart Clock and Amazon's Echo Spot are appealing because they combine conveniences of a virtual assistant with a piece of technology that almost everyone needs. Tiny smart displays could make useful smart alarm clocks purely because we all need something to wake us up each morning. Lenovo's Smart Clock could make a good first Google Assistant device for those who want a device they know they'll use regardless of how much they actually use the assistant itself. But if you already have a Google Home or a Google Home Mini, Lenovo's Smart Clock doesn't provide much in the way of information visualization. You could ask both a Smart Clock and a Home Mini for the same information and the visual aspects the Smart Clock provides wouldn't make that information any better than straight audible information. However, the Google Assistant needed a device like Lenovo's Smart Clock because it helps it compete with Alexa, which now has two tiny smart displays in addition to a slew of other devices. It's clear that Google and Lenovo want to undercut the Echo Spot on price to attract those who want an entry-level Assistant device that provides a little more than the regular Home Mini thanks to its display. But make no mistake, the Echo Spot is a more capable device both in hardware and software. Lenovo's Smart Clock forgoes some key features that make the Nest Hub a decent visual machine while the Echo Spot takes what's great about the Echo Show and shrinks it down to a more versatile size. Both the Echo Spot and the Smart Clock force you to make sacrifices, but you make significantly fewer if you get the Echo Spot. The Good Small design that fits easily on a desk or nightstand. USB port for charging other devices. No camera. Speakers get quite loud, and sound quality is decent for such a small device. The Bad Slow performance. Currently can only show feeds from Nest home security cameras. Google Home app is still a mess. The Ugly Cannot show all of the visual information that the larger Nest Hub or Smart Display can. Source: Lenovo Smart Clock review: A small smart display that doesn’t display much (Ars Technica) (To view the article's image gallery, please visit the above link)
  24. A vulnerability in legacy Iomega and LenovoEMC network-attached storage (NAS) devices has led to many terabytes of potentially sensitive data being accessible to anyone via the Internet. About Iomega and LenovoEMC Iomega Corporation was acquired in 2008 by EMC. In 2013, Iomega became LenovoEMC – a joint venture between Lenovo and EMC Corporation – and Iomega’s products were rebranded under the new name. Iomega’s and LenovoEMC’s storage products were aimed at small and medium-sized businesses. About the vulnerability (CVE-2019-6160) CVE-2019-6160 affects a number of Iomega and LenovoEMC NAS products, which have reached End-of-Service-Life four years ago. The vulnerability stems from an unprotected API call and allows anyone to use Shodan to find vulnerable NAS devices and then simply download the exposed files by sending a specially crafted requests. The data leak was discovered by a Vertical Structure researcher via Shodan, the search engine for Internet-connected devices, and the existence of the flaw was confirmed by WhiteHat Security researchers. After getting notified and confirming the existence of the security issue, Lenovo has released firmware updates for three versions of its software, so that customers may safely continue using the NAS devices. “Lenovo then pulled old software from version control to investigate any other potential vulnerabilities to fix and release updates,” the researchers noted. “Lenovo’s professional approach to vulnerability disclosure offers a good lesson for other organizations who experience similar challenges. Not only did they have a clearly stated vulnerability disclosure policy on their site with contact information, but they responded quickly and worked with WhiteHat and Vertical Structure to understand the nature of the problem and quickly resolve it.” If you own an Iomega or LenovoEMC storage device, check out Lenovo’s security advisory and, if needed, implement the offered update. “If it is not feasible to update the firmware immediately, partial protection can be achieved by removing any public shares and using the device only on trusted networks,” Lenovo advised. Source
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