Rumor: ThinkPad W1 (A new Chromebook)?

Today, i noticed there are many online tech forums talking about a potentially new ThinkPad W series laptop called the ThinkPad W1. Lot of people are arguing whether this machine is real or a cruel joke on die hard ThinkPad fans like me.

For people with a keen eye to details, you would notice couple of interesting facts about this new ThinkPad Prototype.

Firstly, it has a W1 name tag, which means it is a new Halo range of the W series ThinkPad (Workstation grade ThinkPad). So it should have few interesting features not seen in the regular W5xx machines, many of these features could be experimental, much like the interchangeable Fn row key on the ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 2.

Secondly, according to the available information on the web about this new ThinkPad, it will have the following features:

1. Real TrackPoint Buttons, not the integrated TrackPoint Buttons in the W540. Personally, the new integrated trackpoint buttons has been my personal pet hate; i really try to like it, but just couldn’t due to the various issues.

2. 15 inch 3:2 display, 2560 x 1700 IPS display. Similar to a Chromebook Pixel? The Pixel has a smaller 13 inch type display, but with the same display resolution. So this may suggests this new machine to be some sort of high performance Chromebook. Also, since the purchase of Motorola by Lenovo, Google now owns 6% of Lenovo share. So it makes perfect sense that Lenovo works with Google to release a new product aimed at the enterprise market.

3. Integrated and removable batteries. This new ThinkPad will have the same battery setup as the ThinkPad T440s and X240, with the integrated battery (3 cells) and removable battery (6 or 9 cells).

4. Possibly a 6 row keyboard + 1 row of switchable touch sensitive strip? If this is true, then it would be a huge step up from the old ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 2’s 5 rows of physical key and 1 row of switchable Fn key.

5. 3 x USB 3.0, Thunderbolt, HDMI, MiniDP and no VGA (first time on a large ThinkPad Workstation).

6. Option for 16 gigs of integrated RAM with 1 empty DIMM Slot.

7. Apparently, the TrackPad can be used a WACOM tablet? No sure how this works, since it is a clickpad, and it is too small to be used as a proper tablet.

Note: The overall design of this machine takes design cues from the ThinkPad T540, T540p and W540.

8. Release in Q1 of 2015?

While, Lenovo has not confirmed about the existence of this machine, we can only speculate about whether its something Lenovo has its actual development pipeline, or just a rumor. But personally for me, if Lenovo does release this machine, it will be a huge boost for the ThinkPadder’s morale. Since this potentially new ThinkPad machine has all the features that ThinkPadders has been asking since the venerable T60p, which many people have kept using (including me).

I really wish Lenovo can release this machine to the ThinkPad customers, because this shows that Lenovo truly cares about what its customers THINK about its machine.

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