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Lenovo unveils new smart devices

2014-07-25 13:23 Global Times Web Editor: Qin Dexing
Lenovo's new glasses displayed at a press conference held in Beijing Thursday Photo: Courtesy of Lenovo

Lenovo's new glasses displayed at a press conference held in Beijing Thursday Photo: Courtesy of Lenovo

Chinese PC maker Lenovo Group, the world's largest in terms of shipments, has expanded into the arena of wearables and smart home devices with the announcement of a slew of pioneering new gadgets on Thursday, pitting itself against the big names in the field such as Google Inc and Apple Inc.

Three categories of devices - smart glass, smart air cleaner and smart router were introduced by Lenovo's New Business Development (NBD) at a press conference in Beijing, in partnership with companies which have already built a presence in their respective fields such as US-based eyewear technology firm Vuzix Corp, German air cleaner manufacturer Luftmed GmbH and Chengdu-based cloud storage solution provider Diting Technology Co.

The new gear announcements on Thursday signify the company's ambition to take the lead in the Internet of Things, referring to machine-to-machine connections, the would-be next growth engine in the technology space, Bai Yuli, head of the NBD division, told the press conference.

NBD is a new division added to the company in March that serves as an incubation platform for new gadget initiatives like health-related smart home devices and wearables, according to Lenovo.

The Chinese technology giant follows in the footsteps of rival global peers that have already carved their way into the field.

Back in 2012, Google started testing its Google Glass before the product's explorer edition was made available in April 2013. The gadget, featuring an optical head-mounted display, was officially available to consumers in mid-May, going for $1,500.

Samsung unveiled its proprietary smart home platform at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January, while Apple has honed in on home automation following the release of its smart home technology at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco in June.

There are also a number of start-ups focused on either wearables or home automation gears, but it has not been easy for them to grow independently to truly be a challenge to the current technology leviathans, analysts said.

In a sign of boosting its competitiveness apart from the technology, Lenovo announced the prices of its new set of smart devices, at a level lower than the rivaling gadgets.

The M100 smart glass, co--released by Lenovo and Vuzix, for instance, will go for 8,000 yuan ($1,290.40), the company said on Thursday.

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