CHINESE COMPUTER MAKER Lenovo has announced that its first Windows 8 tablet will be available in the US in October.
Unveiled in June at Computex, the Thinkpad Tablet 2 has a 10.1in touchscreen, weighs 600g and is 9.8mm thick.
Lenovo's new tablet is the successor to the original Thinkpad Tablet, which shipped around a year ago and was powered by an ARM processor running Google's Android 3.1 Honeycomb operating system (OS).
The second in the series will be driven by Intel's Atom processor code-named Clover Trail and will run the Windows 8 Professional OS that has been optimized for touchscreens. According Lenovo's release today, the firm decided to switch to an x86 chip for its new tablet because of its backward compatibility with existing Windows programs.
The Thinkpad Tablet 2 will come with optional 3G and, for US users, 4G connectivity options, as well as an optional keyboard dock that can be attached to turn the tablet into a conventional style laptop.
Other features include front and rear cameras, wireless video streaming capabilities, and USB and a HDMI ports so that high-definition TVs and peripherials such as printers can be connected to the tablet.
The tablet will also take stylus input for more precise touch actions, have a fingerprint reader for added security and be remotely managed so IT managers can have more control over user accounts, Lenovo said.
Lenovo VP and GM of the ThinkPad business unit Dilip Bhatia said the ThinkPad Tablet 2 aims to be "a powerful solution for office, home and travel", while offering "companies and IT managers the oversight they need to help secure and manage their company's networks and data".
Microsoft has previously announced that the Windows 8 OS will ship on 26 October, so it's our guess that Lenovo will launch its new tablet around the same time.
US pricing for the tablet has yet to be announced, and we're awaiting a response from Lenovo regarding a UK release date. µ