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Lenovo Teams up with Qualcomm for First 5G Snapdragon Laptop

India is targeting 2020 for 5G rollout

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Lenovo
Lenovo dominated India's tablet market in Q3 2018.

Amid the ongoing trade tensions between the US and China, US-based chip-maker Qualcomm and Chinese computer-maker Lenovo have teamed up to introduce the first 5G laptop, powered by Snapdragon.

Code-named “Project Limitless”, the 5G-enabled PC would be “the world’s first 7nm platform purpose-built for PCs that offers 5G connectivity”, TechCrunch quoted the companies as describing the device on Monday.

The laptop would run on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8cx Compute Platform, which supports both 5G as well as 4G connections and has a battery that Qualcomm claims can last for several days per charge.

The platform would put to use the Snapdragon X55 5G modem, which has download speeds of up to 2.5 Gbps.

The release date and pricing details of “Project Limitless” have not been revealed as yet, the report added.

Qualcomm and Lenovo made the announcement at the Computex press conference held in Taipei, Taiwan.

Qualcomm, Chinese
The logo for Qualcomm appears on a screen at the Nasdaq MarketSite, in New York. VOA

The companies announced their pairing despite US President Donald Trump’s decision to scrutinize trade relations between the two countries due to security concerns.

On May 15, Trump effectively banned Chinese tech major Huawei with a national security order following which Qualcomm, along with Google, Microsoft, Intel and ARM, put restrictions on businesses with Huawei.

Settlement status of the US-China trade war remains unclear as of now but Qualcomm’s withdrawal from Huawei’s manufacturing could greatly affect the Chinese company’s 5G ambitions.

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Currently, South Korea, China, Japan, Australia and the US are leading with 5G large-scale mass deployment.

While China is expected to represent 40 per cent of global 5G connections by 2025, India is yet to allocate 5G spectrum to operators even for 5G trial of use cases.

India is targeting 2020 for 5G rollout. (IANS)

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Lenovo Focusing on Bringing Voice Capability to Its PC

Lenovo and Qualcomm had unveiled the world's first 5G PC called Project Limitless in May this year

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Lenovo, Voice, PCs
Lenovo just announced the first 5G PC, and that's going to be shipping early next year. Pixabay

Chinese tech major Lenovo, the worlds top personal computer maker, is focusing on bringing voice capability to its PCs, and will be shipping its first 5G personal computer early next year, said a top company official.

“Lenovo just announced the first 5G PC, and that’s going to be shipping early next year. We haven’t finalised the exact mode, and the naming will come out in near time,” said Dilip Bhatia, Vice President, Global Marketing, User & Customer Experience, PC & Smart Devices, Lenovo.

Lenovo and Qualcomm had unveiled the world’s first 5G PC called Project Limitless in May this year.

“We are bringing 5G capability to PCs and also voice capability. Today you can say ‘Hey Google’ and start writing messages (on smartphones), so we want to bring the same capability to your PC. We are enabling it for voice capability with Alexa,” Bhatia told IANS on the sidelines of the IFA 2019 here where Lenovo unveiled a range of its sleek laptops and tablets, among other products.

Lenovo, Voice, PCs
Chinese tech major Lenovo, the worlds top personal computer maker, is focusing on bringing voice capability to its PCs, and will be shipping its first 5G personal computer early next year. Pixabay

With users wanting more smartphone-like capability in their laptops, Lenovo has focused a big way on that in its new range of Yoga laptops and Thinkbooks.

Referring to Lenovo’s new Modern Standby mode for its laptops where even during sleep the PC can download emails, Bhatia said: “Today I don’t have to download emails on the PC, it automatically shows up all the time. We have the Modern Standby capability, Always On-Always Connected… People are looking to save time, so If I can turn on the PC and it turns on immediately without me having to type out the password, that saves time.”

On Lenovo using voice technology for its laptops and tablets, Bhatia said: “We’re very bullish on voice. Voice technology like Alexa, Cortana and Siri are getting better and better over time. We feel just like people have Alexa devices and Google devices at home, why can’t they have the same experience with the PC. So that’s why we’ve tried to integrate Alexa with the PC, so even if it’s on sleep mode, and I say ‘Hey Alexa what’s the weather?’, it will report back to me.”

The Lenovo Smart Display devices that have Google interface can be programmed to recognise every family member’s voice.

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“We are truly believers in voice and feel voice will be much more mainstream down the road,” Bhatia said.

Asked if Lenovo would be focusing on different languages, including Indian languages, he said that initially the new voice products would be in English and German.

“Initially, the new products I believe will be in English and German. But over time, as we’re really leveraging Amazon’s Alexa capability as they have more languages rolled out, more languages are certainly an option,” he said.

Bhatia, who focuses on customer experience, said there are numerous ways in which Lenovo ensures that users get a “great experience for their products”.

Lenovo, Voice, PCs
We haven’t finalised the exact mode, and the naming will come out in near time, said Dilip Bhatia, Vice President, Global Marketing. Pixabay

“At Lenovo, we don’t want a one-time transaction, but build loyalty so that customers keep coming back and buy our products. We create loyalty by listening really well to our customers,” he said.

Lenovo has created a special panel of 3,000 consumers, with members from across the world, including India. These consumers, “who kind of are expert of PCs and know what is a good PC”, are reached by Lenovo’s product managers for feedback on the new products and features.

Bhatia’s team also runs a Big Data analytics programme, as part of which they “basically scrape 20 million comments from the Internet” including from Amazon and Flipkart.

“We are using Big Data analytics to understand what people like and what they don’t about a product. This is another way by which we are getting the pulse of the Indian customer,” he added.

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Lenovo also has customer advisory councils, and conducts surveys of its customers for feedback.

“These are some of the few ways in which we listen to the voice of the Indian consumer to help improve our products and provide a better experience. I believe putting the customer at the forefront globally has paid off dividends in our market share,” Bhatia said.

“Globally, we had 24.9 per cent market share last quarter; so one in four PCs was a Lenovo. And that comes from relentless focus on listening to the customers,” he added. (IANS)