With the release of their IdeaPad K1 behind them and two more on the way, Lenovos CEO Yang Yuanquing sat down with the Financial Times to give his take on how far Lenovo’s new tablet business can go. In short, this is divide and conquer.
Yuanquing started out by essentially saying Apple remains a boutique brand. By targeting the less moneyed, Lenovo can become one of the strongest players in the game.
“Apple only covers the top tier,” he says. “With a $US500 price you cannot go to the small cities, townships, low salary class, low income class. I don’t want to say we want to significantly lower the price, rather our strategy is to provide more categories, to cover different market segments.”
Vague… considering that Apple has always been a leader in tablet pricing, and precious few people have beaten them on that front. And there’s no reason to believe Apple can’t lower their prices. So there’s that? But he’s pretty confident, stating that with a strategy like this they can make the tablet market resemble how the PC market looked more than a decade ago. To sum up:
“Lenovo firmly believes there is plenty of room for profitable growth, innovation and long-term success in the PC industry if you have the right strategy, great products and strong global execution.”
Which is all well and good, but certainly easier said than done. After all, the verdict on the K1 was “It’s decent.” To make waves in the way he wants, Lenovo — and all other tablet makers for that matter — need to make tablets that people want. Not just marginally cheaper tablets for “lower class” people. Don’t just make tablets that do things ok when compared to the iPad. Innovate and really stand out. Do that, and then we’ll talk. [Financial Tmes]