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Guru
Posts: 1,383
Registered: ‎06-08-2013
Location: BE
Views: 7,659
Message 11 of 25

Re: Status of the Retro ThinkPad project ?

It has nothing to do with dumbifying the original ThinkPad lines.

Problem with ThinkPad is that it needs to be able to be attractive a new audience, but to do that, they need to make changes to the design. These changes are in (y)our eyes ruining ThinkPad.

ThinkPad is the only brand that has a die-hard community of fans. Nobody wants a retro Dell or retro HP. Because they never offered anything. Lenovo however can't survive off just selling the same old outdated classic design to just this group of fans. They need to make it fashionable so it also attracts to a new audience.

What will eventually happen to ThinkPad if retro ThinkPad succeeds is that either there is a high chance of a permanent retro ThinkPad line. Or the classic design will be used again in every ThinkPad in the lineup.

Right now what we need to do is support the retro ThinkPad the best we can.

Warm regards,
Jonas Hendrickx

Lenovo Insider - Windows Insider MVP

Personal website: ThinkScopes

SeniorGuru
Posts: 2,719
Registered: ‎12-22-2008
Location: CA
Views: 7,647
Message 12 of 25

Re: Status of the Retro ThinkPad project ?


@jonas_hendrickx wrote:

ThinkPad is the only brand that has a die-hard community of fans... Right now what we need to do is support the retro ThinkPad the best we can.

Demand for a Retro ThinkPad reminds me of products like the Morgan line of cars. This is a niche market. It's intended to appeal to enthusiasts for whom price isn't a major consideration.

 

This market can be filled by a global manufacturer like Lenovo who offers an occasional "classic edition" of their flagship product. It can also be served by a much smaller company that can specialize in this very limited market like Morgan (or legalities aside, these guys.)

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Puppy
Bit Torrent
Posts: 1,822
Registered: ‎11-28-2007
Location: CZ
Views: 7,630
Message 13 of 25

Re: Status of the Retro ThinkPad project ?


@jonas_hendrickx wrote:
Problem with ThinkPad is that it needs to be able to be attractive a new audience, but to do that, they need to make changes to the design.

The broken keyboard layout design where Insert/End key even did not work for several years (X series) makes it attractive to whom ? Ordinary users for Facebook posting ? They'll use Mac anyway.

 

As for the price note. What's the cost difference between full 7-row keyboard layout and the broken 6-row ? $1000 ? Who actually ever asked to break the keyboard layout of ThinkPad series ?

 

Back in T400 era there was a discussion about keyboard layout change, the big Esc/Delete keys. There is blog article with logical reasons of the change. Could you please provide similar data-backed study for the 6-row layout ? I expect it will confirm it is much better to have the original navigation keys cluster split over opposite edges of the keyboard, won't it ? Smiley Frustrated In other words, the Think part that you can read in the blog article is gone now.

 

the same old outdated classic design

The "outdated" classic design is proven for its purpose - productive work. Oh wait ... is there any these days ? Check what happend in digital camera market after first release of Fuji X100 retro style camera.

 

Or the classic design will be used again in every ThinkPad in the lineup.

Too late, return to (mini) PC with true keyboard/display and additional cheap laptop for neccessary onsite work is today's solution. And it would mean to admit failure of the new "attractive" design.

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ThinkPad (1992 - 2012): R51, X31, X220, Tablet 8.
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ibmthink
Bit Torrent
Posts: 638
Registered: ‎10-21-2011
Location: DE
Views: 7,496
Message 14 of 25

Re: Status of the Retro ThinkPad project ?

I agree with Puppy. There is no reason for the 6 row layout (besides saving some money on keys maybe). From a design-standpoint, there is no reason why a 7 row keyboard couldn´t look modern. Just make a 7 row Chiclet keyboard. No one would complain, it would not loose Lenovo users.

 

I also disagree that this is a niche market. It is extra market. Would Lenovo loose users by having a 7 row chiclet keyboard on the more expensive ThinkPads? No. Would it bring back users? Yeah! This also would bring Lenovo very good word of mouth.

 

In the future of the PC market, the physical design will become even more important. Screens will be universially very good, Windows on ARM might revolutionize the CPU-market, battery life won´t be an issue anymore. Having a 7 row keyboard would give Lenovo a design-edge over its competitors.

 

That Lenovo even has to consider a "Retro ThinkPad" should be a sign there is something wrong. Its sad that it has come this far, because ThinkPad should be a very progressive, innovative brand.

EvilKingTeapot
Blue Screen Again
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎11-18-2011
Location: New York
Views: 4,914
Message 15 of 25

Re: Status of the Retro ThinkPad project ?

*RANT COMING - SKIP THIS*

 

Is this ever coming? I'm sitting here typing on my x201 wondering if I should continue to wait or just pull the trigger elsewhere. I've stopped myself from buying a new laptop for years just because nothing seems to be as good as what I currently have. First I looked at the X1 - but at the time they maxed at 8GB of ram. And I have that in my system now. Then I looked at the x230 but they took away the seven row layout and gave me chiclet. I touch type and now am pretty much forced to use chicklet because that's the way the world works. Fewer warranty repairs from people spilling their coffee and we can backlight it. So I gave in on that too. But when I looked at the x240 - they had taken away the physical buttons from the trackpoint.

 

I'm at the point now where if I'm going to buy a copied design, why not just buy the original? Other than being black, what makes a ThinkPad a ThinkPad? My friends rave about the Surface Book Pro and  the last ThinkPad I saw in person feels cheap in comparison. Or get a MacBook Pro as most of my developer tools now have ports or I can use a VM if needed.

 

I am well aware that I'm not the target customer. I've purchased three $2.5k+ laptops with them in their lifetime so I'm a nobody in the grand scheme of business.  And I know that things need to be shiny to sell. Lenovo is just not very good at it. When they make a change I don't feel like "I'm losing something but I'm gaining so much more." I just feel like they're taking things away and driving me elsewhere.

Puppy
Bit Torrent
Posts: 1,822
Registered: ‎11-28-2007
Location: CZ
Views: 2,711
Message 16 of 25

Re: Status of the Retro ThinkPad project ?

The project is very likely dead, if this rumor is correct Smiley Frustrated

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ThinkPad (1992 - 2012): R51, X31, X220, Tablet 8.
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Auda
Paper Tape
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎05-25-2016
Location: NO
Views: 2,427
Message 17 of 25

Re: Status of the Retro ThinkPad project ?

Still waiting David Hill.

Puppy
Bit Torrent
Posts: 1,822
Registered: ‎11-28-2007
Location: CZ
Views: 2,321
Message 18 of 25

Re: Status of the Retro ThinkPad project ?


@Auda wrote:

Still waiting David Hill.


No way. The Retro ThinkPad project is dead (as we expected). Instead of that you will get just another custmomized 16:9 portable video player. While there are plenty (even $300) 13.5" 3:2 display devices on the market.

__________________________________
ThinkPad (1992 - 2012): R51, X31, X220, Tablet 8.
Do you care about privacy and security ? Leave Google behind
ondrejglembek
Paper Tape
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎02-28-2017
Location: CZ
Views: 1,750
Message 19 of 25

Re: Status of the Retro ThinkPad project ?

Apparently Lenovo Czech seems to be somewhat "informed":

 

https://twitter.com/LenovoBlogCZ/status/871476059082031107

 

Literally it says: "Retro ThinkPad is not dead. And thinkpad 25th anniversary is coming..."

 

Any news from other lenovo language mutations?

 

 

Administrator
Administrator
Posts: 6,759
Registered: ‎09-03-2014
Location: SK
Views: 1,430
Message 20 of 25

Re: Status of the Retro ThinkPad project ?

Just in case anyone missed it, no it's not dead;

http://blog.lenovo.com/en/blog/retro-thinkpad-its-alive/

Andy


English Community Leader


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