Lenovo announces new ThinkPad Helix, modular Tiny all-in-one

The new modular ThinkCentre Tiny-in-One 23 was designed to deal with the issue that repairs for AIOs have traditionally been more expensive.

Lenovo Tiny AiO

The new Lenovo Tiny All-in-One

Among Lenovo’s announcements at the 2014 IFA Consumer Electronics Unlimited show in Berlin were two products for the business market, the new ThinkPad Helix, and the ThinkCentre Tiny-in-One 23, a new type of modular All-in-One business desktop.

“When we started out to redesign the ThinkPad Helix, the goal was pretty simple,” said Steve Gilbert, director of Lenovo’s Think Product Launch. “The feedback was that in the 2 in 1 space there were too many tradeoffs, too many compromises. End users had to adjust to get their work done. We wanted to design one that adapted to the end user instead.

The new ThinkPad Helix is both thinner and lighter than its predecessor. It weighs 2.98 pounds and measures only 0.38 inches, which is 15 per cent thinner than its predecessor. Its new Intel Core M processor ensures better performance than the previous generation. It is equipped with Gorilla Glass and a large FHD display, has no moving parts for better durability, and can be paired with an optional ThinkPad digitizer pen for additional flexibility and usability.

“We wanted to make it far more useful for customers, and meet all the needs of modern business like smart card readers,” Gilbert said.

The ThinkPad Helix includes a suite of add-on security options, including biometric fingerprint reader, military-grade smart card reader and three factor authentication. It also comes pre-loaded with customized Lenovo software offerings Lenovo Settings provides users with the ability to control and improve their device’s performance and manage system functions easily, automatically and predictably, while Lenovo Companion 2.0 acts as a central hub for users to easily access and understand their system’s best features, manage system health, view available driver updates, buy customized accessories and check warranty status. Lenovo Reach is a cloud storage service for users to store and access files from multiple devices, and Lenovo SHAREit easily transfers digital content to any smartphone, PC and tablet.

The ThinkPad Helix will be available beginning in October with models starting at $USD 999 (with Ultrabook keyboard).

The other business product announced was Lenovo’s new ThinkCentre Tiny-in-One (TIO) 23 modular AIO, which consists of a 23 inch FHD display with a detachable ThinkCentre Tiny PC.

“It is a monitor, but you drop a Tiny in it to make it an All-in-One,” said Gilbert on a press conference call explaining exactly what is novel about the product.

Gilbert said Lenovo designed the ThinkCentre Tiny-in-One 23 to overcome a traditional bugbear of all-in-ones – that repairs have been more expensive.

“The modular Tiny in One fits in an AiO chassis, and we think it will revolutionize the way people do commercial all in ones,” he said. The detachable Tiny locks into the back of the monitor within seconds through a simple tool-less setup process. This lets users configure their 23-inch AIO with a multitude of different chipsets and CPUs according to their needs, choosing from different ThinkCentre Tiny PC products. When it comes time to upgrade or service the system, users can simply pop the old Tiny PC out, drop the new one in and resume work in less than two minutes.

The TIO also powers both the monitor and the Tiny PC with a single standard Lenovo power adapter. It also offers enhanced physical security with an advanced locking mechanism that secures Tiny and an optional optical disk drive module inside the system when a Kensington cable lock is attached.

The ThinkCentre Tiny-in-One 23 starts at $USD 279 and will be available beginning in October.