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bobodod
Blue Screen Again
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎04-23-2013
Location: Oklahoma City
Views: 1,071
Message 1 of 10

extreme displeasure with ThinkLight elimination and integrated TrackPoint buttons

I don't trust myself to write in depth, as my anger grows with the removal of yet more features that set ThinkPads apart from the competition. Lenovo's design department is driving us diehard users to scorn the reliable series of tools we long recommended for purchasing in the tens to thousands.

 

What's left to set ThinkPads apart? Why should we be loyal to a brand that isn't loyal to us?

 

  • ThinkLight: useful for far more than keyboard illumination, such as book reading, and a long time key differentiator
  • TrackPoint: hard buttons are superior, every reviewer and user comments I've read agree
  • vendor lock-in to Lenovo hardware: https://www.change.org/petitions/lenovo-release-an-unencumbered-version-of-the-bios
  • Keyboard: you have removed keys that power users use -- the dedicated customer base for ThinkPads and your most fervent supporters
kdre
Fanfold Paper
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎06-15-2008
Location: Germany
Views: 939
Message 2 of 10

Re: extreme displeasure with ThinkLight elimination and integrated TrackPoint buttons

You took the words right out of my mouth. It is really a shame what happend to the good old Thinkpads :-(

Lenovo Staff
Lenovo Staff
Posts: 45
Registered: ‎07-23-2015
Location: US
Views: 927
Message 3 of 10

Re: extreme displeasure with ThinkLight elimination and integrated TrackPoint buttons


@kdre wrote:

You took the words right out of my mouth. It is really a shame what happend to the good old Thinkpads :-(


Guys, I understand you liked the Thinklight, I did too but, most of our users indicated a backlit keyboard was more appropriate.  Lenovo goes through a vigorus process when making feature/function tradeoff decisions.  Tradeoff is the best way to describe it, we simply cant fit every feature, but please know that we value our customer's feedback and are listening!

Wendel
802.11n
Posts: 485
Registered: ‎07-03-2009
Location: AD
Views: 913
Message 4 of 10

Re: extreme displeasure with ThinkLight elimination and integrated TrackPoint buttons

Then offer both options! The ThinkLight is already a hardware reality so there's no new tooling costs. Keyboards are a separate FRU. They can easily be ordered in any flavor. How difficult can it be to offer choices? To me it's an excellent marketing tool.
Lenovo Staff
Lenovo Staff
Posts: 45
Registered: ‎07-23-2015
Location: US
Views: 907
Message 5 of 10

Re: extreme displeasure with ThinkLight elimination and integrated TrackPoint buttons

Wendel, I certainly understand where you are coming from and beleive me, it has been discussed many times.  The downside to offering more choice, is additional complexity which leads to increased cost to Lenovo and our customers.  Ultimately, we decided to go with a backlit keyboard because most of our customers prefer it.

kdre
Fanfold Paper
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎06-15-2008
Location: Germany
Views: 895
Message 6 of 10

Re: extreme displeasure with ThinkLight elimination and integrated TrackPoint buttons

I am also a customer and I cannot remember that Lenovo ever asked me what I prefer. So on which data do you base your claim that your customers prefer these or that?

Which customers preferred a clickpad? (No matter where I read, people hate it or just got used to it, because they had no other option.)

Which customers preferred a TrackPoint without TrackPoint buttons? (At least you realised that you listend to the wrong user base when you implemented their preference and corrected that mistake.)

Which customers preferred the really weak TN displays? (This is used since I know Thinkpads. I mean, come on, this is the main user interface. There are better options I guess.)

Which customers preferred that dedicated keys were removed? (Why would someone be happy to have less dedicated keys? This is a disadvantage in every sense.)

Which customers preferred that the Ultrabay was removed? (It is not just for removable optical drives, but can also be used to easily swap hard drives as needed.)

I don't believe that any existing customer and longtime Thinkpad user voted for any of these changes. These are just cost saving measures and not really advantages for a user.

The Thinklight was much more than just a lamp that illuminates a keyboard. It was very useful when giving presentations in a dark room for example to make notes, or reading something that was written on a piece of paper. The keyboard backlight is just that: A keyboard backlight. BTW: The Tx30 had both. So, it seems not to be impossible to have it and for sure it cannot be that expensive to include it.

I really don't understand why Lenovo removes features that were there for a long time for the sake of "improving" something. Features that gave the Thinkpad brand a face: Classic keyboard, Thinklight, TrackPoint buttons, didicated Mousepad buttons, dedicated buttons, Ultrabay, Status LEDs, Black color etc.

There was a famous Designer working for the german company "Braun" called Dieter Rams who said once that form has to follow function, not vice versa. And I think Lenovo is just doing that: Sacrifying function for some design changes. In my opinion this very wrong. A true business machine has only one purpose: To serve as a business machine in the best way possible, making life as easy as possible for the user. If I want toy, I buy apple Smiley Happy

Lenovo has so many notebook series that at least the "core" thinkpads should live to user expectations. No tradeoffs, just pure workhorses.

That Lenovos decisions are not always good is shown by the example of the TrackPoint buttons that returned again in the x50 series (Thanks god!). Where was the vigorus process when Lenovo made feature/function tradeoff decisions here. Who made this mistake? Why could this happen? Who did not carefully study user needs? Which user base preferred this choice?

I am taking bets when the first Thinkpad in Apple silver hits the market, because some mysterious users preferred it over black Smiley Happy

Community SuperMod
Community SuperMod
Posts: 5,343
Registered: ‎06-26-2008
Location: US
Views: 881
Message 7 of 10

Re: extreme displeasure with ThinkLight elimination and integrated TrackPoint buttons

@All...

 

ICYMI... Lenovo is considering a Retro ThinkPad.

David Hill, VP and Chief Design Officer, has published 5 articles containing 4 surveys over the past several weeks. If you haven't done so, please consider reading the articles, adding your comments, and most importantly, taking the surveys. All of the links are in my signature below.

 

Make your voices heard!

Regards & Thanks.


Community GuidelinesSearchPrivate MessagingENDEESPTRUUACZ-SKMoto
PM requests for individual support are not answered. If a post solves your issue, please mark it so.

I am not a Lenovo employee.

Lenovo Staff
Lenovo Staff
Posts: 45
Registered: ‎07-23-2015
Location: US
Views: 851
Message 8 of 10

Re: extreme displeasure with ThinkLight elimination and integrated TrackPoint buttons


@sarbin wrote:

@all...

 

ICYMI... Lenovo is considering a Retro ThinkPad.

David Hill, VP and Chief Design Officer, has published 5 articles containing 4 surveys over the past several weeks. If you haven't done so, please consider reading the articles, adding your comments, and most importantly, taking the surveys. All of the links are in my signature below.

 

Make your voices heard!

Regards & Thanks.


Took the words right out of my mouth!  Thanks sarbin!

Community SeniorMod
Community SeniorMod
Posts: 9,259
Registered: ‎01-01-2010
Location: US
Views: 841
Message 9 of 10

Re: extreme displeasure with ThinkLight elimination and integrated TrackPoint buttons

If I were asked ahead of time, I would have said that I wanted the thinklight, but having used some with a backlit keyboard, I find them very usable. Another point is that the newer LCD panels are thinner and allow the lid to be thinner. The thinklight needed some space to allow the light to be aimed toward the keyboard. I would guess that the entire lid would need to be thicker.


Rich


I do not respond to requests for private, one-on-one help. Your questions should be posted in the appropriate forum where they may help others as well.

If a response answers your question, please mark it as the accepted solution.

I am not an employee or agent of Lenovo.
kdre
Fanfold Paper
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎06-15-2008
Location: Germany
Views: 802
Message 10 of 10

Re: extreme displeasure with ThinkLight elimination and integrated TrackPoint buttons

Regarding the Retro Thinkpad:

While I really really would love to see something like that, I can not sleep tonight, if I don't say the following:

 

First, Lenovo fits squared wheels to a car and then they ask the drivers, if they would like to have a retro car with round wheels.

 

Thinkpads lost a lot of their "DNA" as David Hill called it. Thats why Lenovo can think about a retro thinkpad. If they would not mess so much with the Thinkpads for the sake of changing things, no discussions about retro Thinkpads would be necessary.

 

@richk:

I have nothing against the backlit keyboard. I like it. But even with a backlit keyboard the thinklight is still (better: was) a usefull utility with more applications than just to shine on the keyboard. Lenovo killed it and took it from their loyal user base. I also don't mind to have a 1mm thicker lid, if it increases my productivity. You have the X1 which is super thin, why every thinkpad has to sacrify useful functions just to make it a millimeter thinner? If I want a business machine for daily work, I want to have all the useful stuff that helps me through the day: As much dedicated keys and buttons, thinklight, ultrabay etc. If I want a thin toy to impress friends, I buy a mac air or x1 or whatever the market offers.

A thinkpad is a treasure, but not jewlery that I wear around my neck. Function is what counts, not Mac-style "me too" chiclet stuff, with suboptimal layout with less buttons just to look nice.

 

Lenovo could provide additional useful choices for the user: Offer two keyboards, chiclet and classic and let the user choose what they prefer. Then everyone is happy. And to compensate for the increased cost and complexity: Remove low quality screens from your choices. Just offer, e.g. IPS/high quality screens with different resolutions.

 

The whole internet is full of complaints from loyal users, but  Lenovo keeps kickin' their .... continously. This is sad.

 

Let's hope that the retro thinkpad will materialize some day for the sake of good old times, but I doubt that it will become real.

 

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