The Chromebook ThinkPad X131e will have an as yet unidentified Intel processor. The Windows model that's the Lenovo ThinkPad Chromebook is based on uses an Intel Core i3-2367M processor. It also will come with an 11.6-inch, 1366x768 HD LED anti-glare screen, and three USB 3.0 ports. Lenovo also claims that it will weigh less than four pounds1 and have "battery life for the entire school day."
So, why is Lenovo offering a Chromebook? In their press release, Lenovo executive director of ThinkPad marketing, Jerry Paradise, said that "this hardened ThinkPad Chromebook [is] a great computer for schools." In addition, thanks to "Google Apps for Education along with thousands of web apps in the Chrome Web Store, students can easily create documents, edit spreadsheets, view multimedia videos, create slide show presentations and view PDF files." Last, but far from least, Lenovo cited IDG which has found that Chromebooks "require 69 percent less labor to deploy and 92 percent less labor to support."
For cash-constrained school boards, the Chromebook ThinkPad sounds very attractive. So, why isn't Lenovo offering it to consumers or businesses as well? Who says they won't?
Anton Wahlman in The Street recently predicted that the Lenovo Chromebook would be nother nail in Microsoft's coffin. Wahlman wrote, "In 2013, Lenovo will break with its Microsoft Windows exclusivity and start offering PCs -- laptops and desktops alike -- based on Google's PC operating system." I've asked Lenovo to comment on Wahlman's predictions, but they have yet to reply.