Posts Tagged ‘Lenovo’

Former CEO : Wang

New CEO : Jim Wong

Taiwan’s Acer Inc, the world’s no.4 PC vendor, posted a worse-than-expected net loss of T$13.12 billion ($446 million) in the third quarter, with the company aiming to revamp itself with a new CEO and job cuts.

Acer chairman and CEO JT Wang is announcing his resignation from the PC maker today following further disappointing financial results. Wang, an outspoken critic of Microsoft’s Surface tablet, will step down as Acer CEO on January 1st, but will retain his chairman position until the second quarter of 2014 to assist with existing commitments. Acer president Jim Wong will take over as CEO in January in a clear effort to address the struggles the company is facing.

Acer is still the fourth largest PC manufacturer in the world, but the company’s revenues have taken a hit recently as PC sales have slowed across the industry. The company reported a net loss of $446 million in Q3, and it now plans to cut its staff headcount by seven percent globally in an effort to save $100 million in annual operating expenses. While PC sales continue to impact manufacturers, the top three — Lenovo, HP, and Dell — experience small growth in the most recent quarter according to IDC. Acer’s PC sales dropped by nearly 35 percent in Q3, highlighting the problems the company faces to turn its business around.

“Q3’s operating loss was mainly due to the gross margin impact of gearing up for the Windows 8.1 sell-in and the related management of inventory,” the company said in a statement.Acer said there was also an intangible asset impairment loss, which includes trademarks and goodwill, of T$$9.94 billion during the repoting period.Sixteen analysts polled by Thomson Reuters SmartEstimates had forecast a median loss of T$109 million for the quarter. ($1 = 29.4180 Taiwan dollars).

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As part of the IFA flood of new laptops, tablets, and other products, Lenovo is introducing a new PC line, as well as serious revisions to the popular Yoga hybrid. Also new, an Android tablet called the S5000 and a phone called the Vibe X, both of which claim to be especially lightweight.

The Hands-on impressions, photos, and video of Lenovo’s new PC lineup, including a high-res update of the popular Yoga hybrid, and a brand new Yoga version from the ThinkPad brand, which includes a keyboard update that’s been on our wish list for some time.

IdeaPad Flex 14

The IdeaPad Flex line, available in 14- and 15-inch versions, doesn’t fold all the way back into a tablet like the Yoga does. This is more of a laptop with some extra flexibility, bending its screen back by 300 degrees to allow for what we’ve been calling a kiosk mode, with the screen pointing out from the rear of the laptop, away from the keyboard and touch pad.


IdeaPad Flex 20

Unlike earlier tabletop PC such as the HP Rove 20 and original Sony Vaio Tap 20, which both weigh around 12 pounds, the $899 Flex 20 is closer to 8 pounds. That’s about the same as Sony’s just-announced 21-inch Tap 21, and a little more than Dell’s excellent, and extremely thin, 18-inch XPS 18.


IdeaPad Yoga 2 Pro

How do you top the much-loved original? In the case of the just-announced Yoga 2 Pro, the star of the show is an ultra-high-res 13.3-inch display, with a native resolution of 3,200×1,800 pixels. That puts the Yoga 2 in similar territory to
the Toshiba Kirabook, Retina MacBook Pro, Chromebook Pixel, Samsung Ativ Book 9 Plus, and a handful of others.


ThinkPad Yoga

Lenovo has a new take on the Yoga that should make a lot of people very happy. This new ThinkPad-branded model has a seriously engineered keyboard and chassis that pulls the keys into the body as you fold it over backward into tablet mode
Finally, the 7-inch IdeaTab S5000 claims to be lighter than either the iPad Mini or Nexus 7, but has only a 1,280×800 display and a 1.2GHz quad-core MediaTek 8389 CPU. It should be available in December. The Android 4.2 smartphone known as the Vibe X has a 5-inch screen and weighs just 4.1 ounces, but there are currently no plans to release it in the US.

Panasonic will pull out of the smartphone market in Japan and pare its smartphone operations to outsourced production in emerging markets like India, the company’s president said.

The Japanese electronics company, which has suffered $15 billion in losses over its latest two financial years, is staking its turnaround on a transformation from a consumer gadget maker to a supplier for other businesses.

The architect of this turnaround plan, Panasonic President Kazuhiro Tsuga, has warned he would weed out any division that fails to meet a 5 percent operating margin goal within three years.

Tsuga told Reuters in an interview that the company’s mobile division was likely to lose more than the 1.1 billion yen ($11.02 million) targeted loss for the financial year ending next March. Panasonic’s mobile division posted an 8.1 billion yen loss last year.

“It’s not acceptable for the company to be bleeding red ink like this, so we have to think about ways to develop assets that we do have in a more effective direction,” Tsuga said.

While the company is stepping back from the consumer smartphone market, it has said it is developing smartphones for business use that would be similar to its popular “Toughbook” notebook PC series.

Panasonic is one of several handset makers caught out by the meteoric rise of the two dominant smartphone makers – Apple Inc and Samsung Electronic – which have upended the traditional hierarchy of mobile players.

Microsoft this week agreed to buy Nokia’s phone business, which once dominated the global market but has slipped drastically in recent years.

Japanese consumers, once partial to highly customized feature phones made by Panasonic, NEC and Fujitsu, have since moved in large numbers to Apple’s popular iPhones and Samsung’s Galaxy series.

In 2001, Panasonic was the second-largest handset maker in Japan, after NEC, with more than 19% of the market. Last year, it barely had a 7% share, far behind Apple’s 25 percent lead.

Tsuga said Panasonic did not need to manufacture and sell its own smartphones under a vertically integrated business model, but will instead use the company’s brand to sell phones made by other manufacturers as it does already in India.

The knockout blow to its business came when NTT DoCoMo, Japan’s biggest mobile carrier and a loyal distributor for Japanese-made handsets, announced it would promote only Sony’s flagship Xperia smartphone and the Samsung Galaxy during its summer campaign. NEC announced in July that it would pull out of smartphones after discussions to sell its handset business to Lenovo Group fell through, sources familiar with the matter said.

The Z1 handset with the QX100 lens attached weighs 349g (12.3oz)

Sony has confirmed plans to sell two stand-alone lenses that connect to smartphones by wi-fi, allowing them to take higher-quality photos.

The devices are compatible with Android and iOS handsets and mark the creation of a new product category.

The Japanese company announced the products alongside a new smartphone which features a 20.7 megapixel camera and a larger-than-normal image sensor.

The launches should help the firm challenge Nokia’s top-end handset.

The Finnish company – which is in the process of being taken over by Microsoft – unveiled the Lumia 1020 in July. Reviews have suggested that it has the best smartphone camera on the market, but were critical of its price,

Sony told the BBC it would target its Z1 handset at a wider audience than what it called the Lumia 1020’s “super-premium category”.

It confirmed details of the devices at the Ifa consumer tech show in Berlin – much of the information had already leaked via tech news sites.

One analyst suggested the lenses in particular would struggle to find buyers.

“The concept is interesting, but when you think about using it, will users want to carry them around?” asked Francisco Jeronimo, mobile devices research manager at tech consultancy IDC.

“The problem is that for those wanting top-quality photographs, the experience of having a DSLR [digital single lens reflex] offers a better experience than a phone with an add-on camera.

“Meanwhile having the lens attached to a phone makes it feel quite bulky compared to a compact camera or stand-alone handset.

“If the lenses were priced under £100, then I could see photography geeks buying it, or operators bundling it with the phone, but these lenses will be quite expensive.”

Sony itself acknowledged that it did not know how strong demand would be.

“Always we’re discussing: ‘How many pieces should we prepare,'” Yosuke Aoki, a digital imaging spokesman for the firm, told the BBC.

“We’re waiting for after the Ifa announcement to see what the feedback will be to the models.”

Making a statement

Sony is bundling movies and games with the Z1 to help it compete

The QX10 lens offers a 10x optical zoom and 18.2MP resolution which Sony says makes it ideal for taking shots of distant landmarks or close-ups of people. It will cost about £170,

The QX100 features a smaller 3.6x zoom but a bigger sensor with a resolution of 20.2MP. Its aperture goes as wide as f1.8 – allowing more light in – meaning it should be more adept at taking photos in low light or with a very shallow focus. It also offers manual focus as an option which is not possible on the other lens. It will cost about £380.

Once fitted with a battery and memory stick, the QX10 weighs 105g (3.7oz) and the QX100 179g (6.3oz).

Both devices:

  • include technology that compensates for shaky hands
  • activate a link-up to a phone or tablet if it has an NFC (near field communication) chip
  • can attach to different-sized handsets via an extendable clip, or – in the case of the Z1 – using a special case
  • can be operated while a short distance away from the smart device

Neither:

  • has a built-in screen.

Sony Mobile’s head of sales and marketing said they were intended to send a message to consumers, including those who would never buy them.

“It’s a statement as one piece of many things that are starting to come together under the umbrella of Sony,” said Dennis van Schie.

“The PlayStation 4 is coming out. In 4K [ultra-high resolution] TVs, we’re the leader – from the formats to the cameras to recording capabilities [that will appear] quite soon in mobile.

“Now we’re the first ones to dare to create a lens-type camera with a new kind of user interface. It contributes to what Sony is standing for.”

Sony posted a 3.5bn yen ($35m, £23m) profit in the April-to-June quarter, reversing a 24.6bn yen loss the previous year.

Stronger sales of smartphones helped achieve the turnaround.

However, IDC says the firm still only had a 4.1% share of global smartphone shipments over the three months, putting it behind Samsung, Apple, LG, Lenovo, Huawei and ZTE.

Additional value

Nokia has boasted that its Lumia 1020 with a 41MP sensor is the best smartphone camera on the market

Sony is hoping the new water-resistant Z1 handset will help it boost that figure.

It says the device features an exclusive sensor which is the same size as that found in its Cybershot cameras.

It also features new software including the ability to provide live video streams to Facebook, and Info-eye – an app that provides information about books, wine and landmarks among other objects the phone is pointed at.

The company is also taking advantage of its other assets to help the device stand out from the Android crowd. UK shoppers are promised five Sony movie downloads and a selection of free PlayStation mobile games.

“They’ve done quite a good job of differentiating the phone,” said Mr Jeronimo.

“That’s what operators want – to be able to provide additional value from what Sony offers.”That’s why they are looking at Sony as a better prospect for the future than other vendors like Blackberry and HTC.”